Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: South Lindstrom

Nearest Town: Lindstrom
Primary County: Chisago
Survey Date: 07/28/2014
Inventory Number: 13002800
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
Private Property Earthen
DNR Concrete
City Other
City Concrete
DNR Asphalt North side of the channel connecting South Lindstrom and Chisago Lakes.

Fishing Regulations:

Special and/or Experimental Fishing Regulations exist on this lake. Please refer to our online Minnesota Fishing Regulations.

Lake Characteristics

Lake Area (acres): 454.68
Littoral Area (acres): 208.3
Maximum Depth (ft): 34
Water Clarity (ft): 3.8 (3.1-4.4)

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

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 2014 Survey Year


Gear Used

Number of fish per net

Average Fish Weight (lbs)

Normal Range (lbs)


Normal Range

Black Crappie Trap net 4.80 1.8 - 21.2 0.18 0.2 - 0.3
Gill net 8.00 2.5 - 16.5 0.21 0.1 - 0.3
Bluegill Trap net 37.20 7.5 - 62.5 0.23 0.1 - 0.3
Gill net 13.67 N/A 0.25 N/A
Bowfin (dogfish) Trap net 0.40 0.4 - 1.3 4.90 2.3 - 4.1
Common Carp Trap net 0.20 0.4 - 2.0 16.16 2.6 - 6.0
Gill net 0.17 0.3 - 3.0 7.78 1.9 - 5.2
Golden Shiner Trap net 0.20 0.2 - 0.8 0.08 0.1 - 0.1
Green Sunfish Trap net 0.80 0.2 - 1.3 0.24 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 0.17 0.2 - 0.5 0.09 N/A
Hybrid Sunfish Trap net 3.00 N/A 0.34 N/A
Gill net 1.00 N/A 0.24 N/A
Largemouth Bass Trap net 0.40 0.2 - 0.7 1.79 0.2 - 0.9
Gill net 1.00 0.3 - 0.8 1.53 0.4 - 1.0
Northern Pike Trap net 0.80 N/A 2.40 N/A
Gill net 4.83 1.5 - 7.3 3.07 2.0 - 3.5
Pumpkinseed Trap net 7.20 0.7 - 4.2 0.32 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 5.00 N/A 0.33 N/A
Walleye Trap net 1.20 0.3 - 1.2 3.22 0.8 - 2.8
Gill net 7.00 1.2 - 6.3 2.35 1.2 - 2.7
White Sucker Trap net 0.20 0.2 - 1.0 4.90 1.6 - 2.8
Yellow Bullhead Trap net 0.80 0.9 - 5.7 1.29 0.5 - 0.8
Yellow Perch Trap net 0.20 0.3 - 1.7 0.08 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 1.33 2.0 - 27.9 0.11 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 2014 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 crappie 16 52 2 0 0 0 0 0 70
bluegill 71 190 0 0 0 0 0 0 261
bowfin (dogfish) 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 2
common carp 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 2
golden shiner 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
green sunfish 1 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 5
hybrid sunfish 2 19 0 0 0 0 0 0 21
largemouth bass 0 0 1 4 3 0 0 0 8
northern pike 0 0 0 1 1 20 9 2 33
pumpkinseed 6 58 0 0 0 0 0 0 64
walleye 0 0 0 8 23 15 2 0 48
white sucker 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1
yellow bullhead 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 0 4
yellow perch 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 8

For the record, the largest Smallmouth Buffalo taken in Minnesota weighed 20 lbs., 0 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Big Sandy Lake, Aitkin County
    When: 9/20/03
    Statistics: 32" length, 23-3/4" girth

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2013 Walleye2 fingerlings 6,636 250.0
2012 Walleye fingerlings 1,042 128.0
  Walleye yearlings 154 77.0
2011 Walleye fingerlings 4,384 208.0
2010 Walleye fingerlings 4,160 104.0
2009 Walleye1 fingerlings 4,439 400.0
2007 Walleye fingerlings 12,566 372.0

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

County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
Chisago Co., 13002800
Bluegill Sunfish All sizes        
Bullhead   All sizes     Mercury
Northern Pike   All sizes     Mercury

General Population

County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
Chisago Co., 13002800
Bluegill Sunfish All sizes        
Bullhead All sizes        
Northern Pike All sizes        

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.

PCBS - Polychlorinated biphenyls
PFOS - Perfluorooctane sulfanate

Status of the Fishery (as of 07/28/2014)

South Lindstrom Lake is a moderately hard water and moderately fertile 499 acre lake located in southern Chisago County bordering Chisago City. The lake is broadly connected to Chisago Lake by a natural channel. The two lakes are somewhat physically different with South Lindstrom having a smaller percentage of littoral (less than 15 feet depth) acreage (42%) than Chisago (80%). The channel allows fish to migrate freely between the two lakes. Because past surveys and assessments dating back to 1956 indicate similar fish composition and abundance, the two lakes are considered one for management purposes. Currently, the primary management species are Walleye and Largemouth Bass.

The Chisago chain of lakes, which also includes Chisago, North Lindstrom, North Center, and South Center, has a history of extreme water level fluctuations. These fluctuations, up to 7 vertical feet, are believed to be due to a net loss of water to groundwater in the system, making the lakes dependent on long term cycles in precipitation. The water levels in 2009 were the lowest they have been in 40 years.

Chisago-South Lindstrom Lake was selected for a special Largemouth Bass regulation due to a 1995 survey that found a high abundance of small bass in both basins. A 12-inch maximum size limit for Largemouth Bass was implemented in March 1997 and was based on the premise that angler harvest was limiting the size structure of the Largemouth Bass population. Post regulation surveys have indicated that the overall population size structure of Largemouth Bass has improved. Nighttime spring electrofishing was conducted on May 27, 2014 to assess the current Largemouth Bass population. A catch rate of 244 fish per hour was the highest catch rate observed in South Lindstrom Lake. The modal length group of Largemouth Bass observed in the electrofishing assessment was 13 inches, and lengths ranged from 7.3 to 17.8 inches. Currently, the Largemouth Bass population is meeting the objectives of the special regulation.

Walleye catch rates were above average at 7.0 fish per net, which is similar to levels observed in the 2000 and 2005 assessments. Mean weight of Walleye was similar to the past two surveys at almost 2.4 pounds. Walleye lengths ranged from 12.8 to 25.6 inches with a mean length of 18.5 inches. Otolith data sorted the thirty aged Walleye into seven year classes, with all but one fish corresponding to years with fall fingerling stockings. The 2009 year class (stocked) accounted for 53% of the catch. The Walleye catch rate of 7 per net is within the long range goal of 3 to 8 per net.

The Northern Pike gill net catch of 4.8 per net was above average when compared to similar lakes in Minnesota. Northern Pike catch rates have been similar in all surveys since 1995, when catch rates peaked at just over 6 fish per net. Previous to the 1995 assessment, catch rates were less than 2 per net. Mean weight was similar to the last assessment at 3.1 pounds and remained above average. Northern Pike lengths ranged from 12.8 to 30.2 inches with a mean length of 23.9 inches. The oldest Northern Pike sampled was age-8 and 7 year-classes were represented.

Trap nets sampled Bluegill at above average rates. The mean weight, 0.22 pounds, was also above average. Bluegill lengths ranged from 3.3 to 8.1 inches with a 6.4 inch mean length. Bluegill 7 inches and greater represented 44% of the catch, a good ratio for the Chisago Lakes Area. However, not many Bluegill exceeded 8 inches.

Black Crappie gill net catch rates declined to 8.0 per net and the trap net catch rates also declined to below average. Mean weight, based on the trap net catch declined to well below average, while the mean weight of Black Crappie caught in the gill nets also declined but remained above average. Sampled Black Crappie lengths ranged from 5.3 to 10.5 inches and had a mean length of 7.0 inches, however only a few fish over 8 inches were observed.

Yellow Perch numbers continue to decline and catch rates are at the lowest levels ever observed. Now at 1.3 per gill net, they are well below average when compared to similar lakes. White Sucker catch rates are also at the lowest point ever observed and no Golden Shiners were caught during the assessment.

Quality fishing opportunities exist for most species in South Lindstrom Lake. At times fishing pressure can be high and anglers are encouraged to practice selective harvest to help maintain and improve the quality of South Lindstrom Lake's fishery. Selective harvest encourages releasing larger fish while allowing the harvest of more abundant smaller fish. Releasing medium to large fish will help restore and maintain fish community balance, as well as increase opportunities to catch large fish in the future. The current Largemouth Bass regulation is a great example of this. This regulation protects larger fish, which has created excellent catch-and-release angling opportunities for Largemouth Bass larger than 12 inches, while still allowing for harvest of the smaller fish.

Non-native invasive species of vegetation are present in South Lindstrom Lake. Eurasian Watermilfoil was first documented in South Lindstrom Lake in the fall of 2009 and Curlyleaf Pondweed has been present since at least 1969. Anglers and boaters should take necessary precautions to prevent the further spread of invasive species.

Some shorelines of South Lindstrom Lake are highly developed, which can put stress on the lake's aquatic habitat and ecosystem integrity. Environmentally friendly development practices, such as shoreline buffer strips of natural vegetation, are encouraged to help maintain and improve the water quality of South Lindstrom Lake. Water level fluctuations in the Chisago chain of lakes can leave exposed sediments and if left alone, these areas will naturally vegetate and stabilize the shorelines on their own. Also, if trees and branches have fallen in the water, consider leaving them where they are to provide important habitat for fish and wildlife that is often missing in highly developed lakes.

For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
PO Box 398
306 Power Ave N
Hinckley, MN 55037
Phone: (320) 384-7721
Internet: Hinckley Fisheries

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 B0065 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

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    Toll-free: (800) 652-9093