Tennessee's Streams and Rivers

Warmwater Stream

Most of Tennessee's waterways are warm water streams and rivers.  As the name implies, these are warm in the summer months with temperatures ranging from 70 - 90° F.    

There are about 17,000 miles of warm water streams and rivers in Tennessee.  They are hosts to hundreds of fish species of all shapes and sizes.  Relatively few species provide angling opportunities but the fishing can be fantastic.  Typical fish include black bass, rock bass, bream, and catfish.  

Some rivers and larger streams can be navigated and fished by motorboats.  Most of the resource is smaller waters which are fished by bank access, in-stream wading, or floating in canoes or johnboats.  Most warm water streams are located on private property. To assure the future of these fisheries, respect landowner's rights by obtaining permission to enter the property and leave the area cleaner than you found it.


Warmwater Stream Monitoring

Mississippi River

The Mississippi river flows 167 miles along Tennessee Fishing immediately downstream of dikes and revetments and can be productive for catfish, striped bass, white bass, and sauger. Side channel sloughs and backwater areas that are connected to the main channel are also good fishing areas for catfish, bass and panfish.

Since 1999 TWRA biologists have been sampling the river to describe the fisheries resources in the river. Biologists use bottom trawls, seines and electrofishing boats to inventory fish species.