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To reach the lake, travel 2 miles east of Manila on Arkansas Highway 18, then 2 miles north on the gravel access road. Signs mark the turnoff on Highway 18.

The AGFC provides concrete boat ramps at the lake's northeast corner and south end.  A courtesy dock is located adjacent the south ramp, and a wheelchair-accessible fishing pier is located at the northwest corner.

Area-Specific Regulations
  • Largemouth bass from 14 inches to 17 inches long must be released immediately.
  • Largemouth bass daily limit is 10, one of which may be over 17 inches.
  • See current Fishing Guidebook for wildlife management area regulations.
  • Handicapped-accessible fishing pier is available.



Cypress trees, stumps, fallen logs, intermittent riprap along levees


Average depth - 4 feet
Maximum depth - 12 feet


Mention Mallard Lake and the conversation instantly turns to bass fishing.  This fertile impoundment gained national attention in 1976 when a 16-pound, 4-ounce state-record largemouth bass was caught here. That was just one of many 10-pound-plus wallhangers the lake has given up. 
Mallard Lake was created by constructing a levee system around a low-lying portion of 11,447-acre Big Lake Wildlife Management Area. The lake is a welcome compliment to this hunter's haven, and sportsmen can combine fishing trips with bottomland hunts for ducks, raccoons, squirrels or other game. Mallard Lake underwent extensive renovation in 1985 to eliminate muddy water and reduce rough fish. 

Forage Base

Shad, Small Sunfish


South end of Big Lake Wildlife Management Area, northern Mississippi County, 3 miles east of Manila

Detailed Interactive Map