|Nearest Town: Waterville
Primary County: Le Sueur
|Survey Date: 06/01/2009|
Inventory Number: 40005100
|Did you know? Spawning habitat improvements can enhance naturally reproducing populations of fish species such as walleye and northern pike.|
|Species||Number of fish per net||
Average Fish Weight (lbs)
Normal Range (lbs)
|Black Bullhead||Gill net||2.00||0.5 - 11.0||1.17||0.2 - 0.6|
|Black Crappie||Trap net||0.25||0.5 - 3.3||0.38||0.3 - 0.5|
|Gill net||5.00||0.5 - 2.9||0.33||0.2 - 0.5|
|Bluegill||Trap net||43.50||5.7 - 40.5||0.26||0.1 - 0.2|
|Bowfin (dogfish)||Trap net||0.88||0.4 - 1.3||1.84||3.0 - 4.5|
|Golden Shiner||Trap net||0.12||0.2 - 1.5||0.07||0.1 - 0.2|
|Hybrid Sunfish||Trap net||0.12||N/A||0.24||N/A|
|Largemouth Bass||Trap net||0.12||0.3 - 1.6||0.04||0.2 - 0.9|
|Gill net||1.00||0.3 - 1.5||0.56||0.5 - 1.3|
|Northern Pike||Trap net||0.25||N/A||0.33||N/A|
|Gill net||7.00||2.8 - 8.7||3.03||1.5 - 2.9|
|Pumpkinseed||Trap net||4.75||1.3 - 6.3||0.16||0.1 - 0.2|
|Yellow Bullhead||Trap net||0.75||1.0 - 8.4||0.93||0.5 - 0.7|
|Gill net||16.50||0.5 - 11.0||0.59||0.4 - 0.7|
|Species||Number of fish caught in each category (inches)|
|For the record, the largest Smallmouth Bass taken in Minnesota weighed 8 lbs. and was caught: |
Fish Lake in Le Sueur County is a 78 acre lake north of the city of Elysian. A DNR-owned public access is located on the southeast end of the lake off Le Sueur county road 14. Fish Lake's small and wooded watershed, natural environment designation with little shoreline development, clear water and abundant plant growth make this lake a gem in south central Minnesota.
Fish Lake was surveyed the week of June 1, 2009 to monitor the fish community. Bluegills were the most abundant fish in the survey, averaging 44 fish per trap net lift, a value that exceeds the upper quartile for class 28 lakes. Size structure was also favorable; average bluegill weight was 0.25 pounds per fish, also in excess of the upper quartile for this lake class. Bluegill length ranged from 3.0 to 8.6 inches with an average length of 6.8 inches, an intermediate size between quality and preferred length category stock values. Bluegills do well in Fish Lake's clear water and healthy aquatic vegetation community. Secchi disk readings, a measure of water clarity, were reported at 15 feet. Aquatic vegetation grows to this depth as well.
Twelve black crappie were caught in gill and trap nets. Average crappie size between all gears was just under 9 inches. Anglers report good crappie fishing in the fall, with fish suspended over the 55 foot deep hole in the center of the lake. Because of the exceptional water clarity and steep breaklines around shore, crappies may not be well sampled in Fish Lake.
Northern pike averaged 7 fish per gill net lift. Pike size was favorable; the average fish weight was 3 pounds. Pike ranged from 16 to 37 inches.
Yellow bullheads were the most abundant fish in the gill nets at 17 fish per lift. Yellow bullhead are indicators of good water quality, unlike black bullheads that generally live in disturbed and turbid waters. Yellow bullhead ranged from 8 to 12 inches in length.
Largemouth bass are doing well in Fish Lake's clear water, abundant macrophyte, bass-panfish community. Fish Lake was sampled with an electrofishing boat one week prior to the netting survey. Largemouth bass abundance totaled 105 fish per hour of on time. Average size ran small, with average weight around 0.4 pounds and average length 8.3 inches. Less than five percent of the fish sampled exceeded fifteen inches in length. Other fish sampled in the survey include pumpkinseed, black bullhead, bowfin (dogfish), golden shiner, and hybrid sunfish.
Anglers can help maintain or improve the quality of fishing by practicing selective harvest. Selective harvest allows for the harvest of smaller fish for table fare, but encourages release of medium- to large-sized fish. Releasing these fish can help maintain balance in the fish community in Fish Lake and provide anglers the opportunity to catch more and larger fish in the future.
Shoreline areas on the land and into the shallow water provide essential habitat for fish and wildlife that live in or near Minnesota's lakes. Overdeveloped shorelines cannot support the fish, wildlife, and clean water that are associated with natural undeveloped lakes. Shoreline habitat consists of aquatic plants, woody plants, and natural lake bottom soils.
Plants in the water and at the water's edge provide habitat, prevent erosion, and absorb excess nutrients. Shrubs, trees, and woody debris such as fallen trees or limbs provide good habitat both above and below the water and should be left in place. By leaving a buffer strip of natural vegetation along the shoreline, property owners can reduce erosion, help maintain water quality, and provide habitat and travel corridors for wildlife.
|For more information on this lake, contact:||Lake maps can be obtained from:|
For general DNR Information, contact:
DNR Information Center
500 Lafayette Road
St. Paul, MN 55155-4040
TDD: (651) 296-6157 or (888) MINNDNR
Turn in Poachers (TIP):
Toll-free: (800) 652-9093