Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Ripple (Mud)

Nearest Town: Aitkin
Primary County: Aitkin
Survey Date: 07/29/2013
Inventory Number: 01014600
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
DNR Concrete


Lake Characteristics

Lake Area (acres): 629.24
Littoral Area (acres): 295
Maximum Depth (ft): 39
Water Clarity (ft): 4

Dominant Bottom Substrate: N/A
Abundance of Aquatic Plants: N/A
Maximum Depth of Plant Growth (ft): 7.4 (0-8)


Did you know? The annual budget for the Section of Fisheries is approximately $17 million, which is funded primarily by fishing license and stamp fees and by a federal excise tax on fishing and boating equipment.

Fish Sampled for the 2013 Survey Year

Species

Gear Used

Number of fish per net

Average Fish Weight (lbs)

Normal Range (lbs)

Caught

Normal Range

Black Bullhead Trap net 0.11 0.3 - 2.8 0.75 0.4 - 0.8
Gill net 1.56 0.6 - 9.5 0.61 0.5 - 0.8
Black Crappie Trap net 2.11 0.7 - 3.2 0.18 0.2 - 0.5
Gill net 15.89 0.5 - 2.7 0.22 0.2 - 0.4
Bluegill Trap net 10.44 5.6 - 42.3 0.21 0.1 - 0.3
Gill net 0.89 N/A 0.27 N/A
Bowfin (dogfish) Trap net 0.67 0.4 - 1.0 2.59 3.1 - 4.8
Gill net 0.44 0.1 - 0.4 2.73 2.9 - 5.0
Brown Bullhead Trap net 0.11 0.3 - 1.5 1.34 0.6 - 1.0
Gill net 0.44 0.3 - 2.2 1.22 0.6 - 1.0
Largemouth Bass Gill net 0.11 0.3 - 1.2 1.46 0.5 - 1.1
Northern Pike Trap net 0.33 N/A 2.72 N/A
Gill net 3.11 3.1 - 8.5 2.30 1.5 - 2.7
Pumpkinseed Trap net 2.22 1.7 - 8.2 0.21 0.1 - 0.2
Rock Bass Trap net 0.11 0.6 - 2.5 0.49 0.2 - 0.5
Gill net 0.11 0.3 - 2.0 0.59 0.3 - 0.5
Shorthead Redhorse Trap net 0.22 0.3 - 3.9 1.77 1.2 - 2.9
Gill net 1.44 0.2 - 1.2 1.72 1.1 - 2.5
Silver Redhorse Trap net 0.11 N/A 3.97 N/A
Walleye Gill net 2.22 1.3 - 5.5 2.66 1.2 - 2.4
White Sucker Trap net 0.11 0.2 - 1.0 2.33 1.7 - 2.9
Gill net 1.33 0.5 - 3.5 2.50 1.6 - 2.4
Yellow Bullhead Trap net 2.89 1.5 - 7.7 1.04 0.5 - 0.8
Gill net 1.56 0.9 - 10.0 0.93 0.5 - 0.7
Yellow Perch Trap net 0.33 0.5 - 2.7 0.11 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 7.33 2.5 - 24.2 0.09 0.1 - 0.2
Normal Ranges represent typical catches for lakes with similar physical and chemical characteristics.


Length of Selected Species (Trapnet, Gillnet) Sampled for the 2013 Survey Year

Species Number of fish caught in each category (inches)
0-5 6-8 9-11 12-14 15-19 20-24 25-29 30+ Total
black bullhead 0 2 12 1 0 0 0 0 15
black crappie 32 109 21 0 0 0 0 0 162
bluegill 41 61 0 0 0 0 0 0 102
bowfin (dogfish) 0 0 0 1 5 4 0 0 10
brown bullhead 0 0 1 4 0 0 0 0 5
largemouth bass 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
northern pike 0 0 0 0 11 15 4 1 31
pumpkinseed 8 12 0 0 0 0 0 0 20
rock bass 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2
shorthead redhorse 0 0 0 3 12 0 0 0 15
silver redhorse 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1
walleye 0 0 0 4 9 4 3 0 20
white sucker 0 0 0 2 9 2 0 0 13
yellow bullhead 0 0 17 23 0 0 0 0 40
yellow perch 53 16 0 0 0 0 0 0 69


For the record, the largest Lake Trout taken in Minnesota weighed 43 lbs., 8 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Lake Superior, near Hovland
    When: 5/30/55

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2012 Walleye2 fingerlings 11,308 589.7
2010 Walleye1 fingerlings 8,850 590.0
2008 Walleye fingerlings 15,033 589.8
2006 Walleye1 fingerlings 5,965 345.0
  Walleye1 fingerlings 4,526 155.0
  Walleye yearlings 130 100.4
2005 Walleye yearlings 904 231.0
  Walleye fingerlings 2,832 121.0
2004 Walleye fingerlings 7,755 235.0

Stocking Notes
1 - indicates fish purchased and stocked by private citizens and sporting groups.
2 - indicates fish purchased by the DNR for stocking.

Stocking Fish Sizes
Fry - Newly hatched fish that are ready to be stocked usually called "swim-ups". Walleye fry are 1/3 of an inch or around 8 mm.
Fingerling - Fingerlings are one to six months old and can range from a size of one to twelve inches depending on the species. Walleye fingerlings range from three to eight inches each fall.
Yearling - Yearling fish are at least one year old. A one-year-old fish can range from three to twenty inches depending on the species. Walleye yearlings average from six to twelve inches.
Adult - Adult fish are fish that have reached maturity. Depending on the species, maturity can be reached at two years of age. Walleye reach maturity between the ages of four and six years.

Fish Consumption Guidelines

These fish consumption guidelines help people make choices about which fish to eat and how often. Following the guidelin es enables people to reduce their exposure to contaminants while still enjoying the many benefits from fish.

Pregnant Women, Women who may become pregnant and Children under age 15

LAKE NAME
County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
RIPPLE
Aitkin Co., 01014600
Bluegill Sunfish   All sizes     Mercury
Northern Pike     All sizes   Mercury
Walleye     All sizes   Mercury

General Population

LAKE NAME
County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
RIPPLE
Aitkin Co., 01014600
Bluegill Sunfish All sizes        
Northern Pike   All sizes     Mercury
Walleye   All sizes     Mercury

DOWID - MN DNR, Division of Waters' lake ID number.

Contaminants listed were measured at levels that trigger advice to limit consumption.

Listing of consumption guidelines do not imply the fish are legal to keep, MN DNR fishing regulations should be consulted.

Dioxin
Mercury
PCBS - Polychlorinated biphenyls
PFOS - Perfluorooctane sulfanate


Status of the Fishery (as of 07/29/2013)

Ripple Lake, located about five miles south of Aitkin, is part of the lower Ripple River chain of lakes. There is a public access located in the outlet channel a short distance downstream from the lake. Motor vehicle travel from this access is not recommended during the winter due to flowing water. During open water periods, most boaters are able to navigate upstream to Elm Island Lake at normal water levels. Downstream travel to Diamond Lake is limited by a water control structure and only practical with a canoe or similar craft, however paddlers can navigate all the way to the Mississippi River and beyond. The shoreline is characterized by having numerous points and bays, with good stands of hardstem bulrush and wild rice, and the water is heavily tannin stained, appearing brown.

Walleye have been stocked regularly at a variety of sizes and frequencies since the 1980's, and the 2013 catch rate was similar to previous surveys over that time. Several stocked year classes were identified suggesting that efforts have been successful at maintaining a walleye population typical for this type of lake. Walleye exhibited slow growth, but displayed a nice range of sizes with fish sampled over 28".

The 2013 catches of bluegill and crappie were similar to historic surveys. Black crappie abundance was well above the expected range for similar lakes, while bluegill abundance was moderately low. Crappie growth was slow, and while fish greater than 10" long were seldom captured in survey gear in the past, several strong year classes indicate annual natural reproduction. Bluegill exhibit much better size and growth characteristics than crappie, in part due to their relatively low abundance. Size from the 2013 trap net catch averaged 6.3", with 48% measuring greater than 7".

Northern pike abundance has also remained at low levels and they have maintained a favorable size structure throughout the lake's survey history. The 2013 gill net catch ranged in length from 17.1 to 32.4", and averaged 21.8" and 2.3 pounds, with 21% greater than 24". Growth rates of pike in Ripple Lake have historically been slightly above local and statewide averages, and this is likely due to a robust forage base of perch and various sucker species. Anglers are encouraged to release larger pike to help protect their role in maintaining quality size structure of many species, and to maximize the sporting benefit for multiple anglers by recycling these quality fish.

Maintaining the good bulrush and rice beds is important for both fish and wildlife resources. In addition, coarse woody habitat such as fallen trees and branches offer additional habitat that should be left in place for the benefit of most fish species in Ripple Lake. While it can be inconvenient when a tree falls into one's dock or swimming area, consider moving it to an area along your shoreline that is clear of your activity, rather than removing it from the lake. Benefits of good habitat stewardship are often rewarded with good fishing.


For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
PO Box 138
1200 Minnesota Ave S
Aitkin, MN 56431
Phone: (218) 927-7503
Internet: Aitkin Fisheries
E-Mail: Aitkin.Fisheries@state.mn.us

Lake maps can be obtained from:

Minnesota Bookstore
660 Olive Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
(651) 297-3000 or (800) 657-3757
To order, use C1736 for the map-id.


For general DNR Information, contact:

DNR Information Center
500 Lafayette Road
St. Paul, MN 55155-4040
TDD: (651) 296-6157 or (888) MINNDNR
Internet: www.dnr.state.mn.us
E-Mail: info.dnr@state.mn.us

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