Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Rush

Nearest Town: Ottertail
Primary County: Otter Tail
Survey Date: 08/12/2013
Inventory Number: 56014100
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
DNR Concrete A state owned public access is located off of County Road 14 along the northeast shoreline of the lake.
DNR Concrete A state owned public access is located off of State Highway 78 along the southwest shoreline of the lake.


Lake Characteristics

Lake Area (acres): 5233.76
Littoral Area (acres): 3325
Maximum Depth (ft): 68
Water Clarity (ft): 4.7 (4.3-4.9)

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


Did you know? Minnesota has 11,482 lakes 10 acres or larger, of which 5,483 are fishing lakes. Excluding Lake Superior, the state has 3.8 million acres of fishing water. Minnesota's portion of Lake Superior is 1.4 million acres.

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 0.80 0.3 - 2.6 1.25 0.5 - 0.9
Gill net 0.07 0.6 - 6.8 1.98 0.5 - 1.0
Black Crappie Trap net 1.60 0.4 - 2.3 0.49 0.3 - 0.6
Gill net 1.07 0.4 - 2.7 0.30 0.3 - 0.6
Bluegill Trap net 26.13 4.4 - 49.0 0.23 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 0.73 N/A 0.09 N/A
Bowfin (dogfish) Trap net 0.47 0.3 - 1.1 3.21 3.7 - 5.1
Gill net 0.07 0.1 - 0.4 3.14 3.1 - 4.6
Common Carp Trap net 1.67 0.2 - 1.0 3.88 3.8 - 8.7
Hybrid Sunfish Trap net 0.73 N/A 0.15 N/A
Gill net 0.27 N/A 0.24 N/A
Largemouth Bass Gill net 0.07 0.3 - 1.4 2.56 0.5 - 1.2
Northern Pike Trap net 0.40 N/A 1.82 N/A
Gill net 5.47 2.8 - 9.0 1.98 1.6 - 2.8
Pumpkinseed Trap net 5.20 1.8 - 7.8 0.21 0.1 - 0.3
Gill net 0.93 N/A 0.22 N/A
Rock Bass Trap net 0.80 0.5 - 2.5 0.37 0.3 - 0.5
Gill net 0.20 0.6 - 3.9 0.29 0.3 - 0.5
Shorthead Redhorse Gill net 0.47 0.2 - 0.9 1.10 1.1 - 2.2
Tullibee (cisco) Gill net 2.27 0.8 - 6.2 0.65 0.6 - 1.4
Walleye Trap net 0.07 0.2 - 0.8 0.50 1.0 - 2.7
Gill net 9.13 3.3 - 8.8 1.00 1.2 - 2.1
White Sucker Trap net 1.87 0.2 - 1.1 2.34 1.8 - 3.0
Gill net 5.27 0.9 - 4.0 1.13 1.6 - 2.4
Yellow Bullhead Trap net 4.73 1.2 - 5.2 0.94 0.6 - 0.9
Gill net 4.40 1.2 - 10.9 0.94 0.6 - 0.9
Yellow Perch Trap net 1.60 0.6 - 3.5 0.09 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 6.67 7.0 - 46.3 0.12 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 0 3 9 1 0 0 0 13
black crappie 7 11 21 1 0 0 0 0 40
bluegill 196 196 4 0 0 0 0 0 403
bowfin (dogfish) 0 0 0 0 1 7 0 0 8
common carp 0 0 0 0 16 8 1 0 25
hybrid sunfish 9 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 15
largemouth bass 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1
northern pike 0 0 0 0 25 58 5 0 88
pumpkinseed 44 48 0 0 0 0 0 0 92
rock bass 6 6 3 0 0 0 0 0 15
shorthead redhorse 0 0 4 0 3 0 0 0 7
tullibee (cisco) 0 16 1 15 2 0 0 0 34
walleye 0 3 44 50 29 5 2 0 138
white sucker 0 19 14 18 55 1 0 0 107
yellow bullhead 0 1 68 67 1 0 0 0 137
yellow perch 61 58 4 0 0 0 0 0 124


For the record, the largest Hybrid Sunfish taken in Minnesota weighed 1 lb., 12 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Middle Branch of the Zumbro River, Olmsted County
    When: 7/9/94
    Statistics: 11.5" length, 12" girth

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2013 Walleye1 fry 360,000 1.0
2012 Walleye1 fingerlings 2,006 152.0
2010 Walleye1 fry 1,000,000 8.1
2008 Walleye1 fingerlings 8,235 305.0
2006 Walleye1 fingerlings 9,300 310.0
2004 Walleye1 fry 725,000 7.2

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
RUSH
Otter Tail Co., 56014100
Bluegill Sunfish All sizes        
Bullhead   All sizes     Mercury
Carp   All sizes     Mercury
Northern Pike   All sizes     Mercury
Walleye   All sizes     Mercury
White Sucker All sizes        

General Population

LAKE NAME
County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
RUSH
Otter Tail Co., 56014100
Bluegill Sunfish All sizes        
Bullhead All sizes        
Carp All sizes        
Northern Pike   All sizes     Mercury
Walleye   All sizes     Mercury
White Sucker 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.

Dioxin
Mercury
PCBS - Polychlorinated biphenyls
PFOS - Perfluorooctane sulfanate


Status of the Fishery (as of 08/12/2013)

Rush Lake is located in central Otter Tail County two miles north of Ottertail, MN. Rush Lake is a 5,337-acre mesotrophic (moderately fertile) lake that is part of the Otter Tail River Watershed. The Otter Tail River inlet is located along the north shoreline while the outlet is located along the southwest shoreline of the lake. The immediate watershed is composed primarily of agricultural land interspersed with hardwood woodlots and marshes. The maximum depth is 68 feet; however, 62% of the lake is less than 15 feet in depth. The secchi disk reading during the 2013 lake survey was 4.3 feet. Previous secchi disk readings have ranged from 3.5 to 7.0 feet. A majority of the shoreline of Rush Lake has been developed. Homes, cottages, and resorts compose the development. The 1998 lake survey referenced 284 homes/cottages and 14 resorts. DNR owned public water accesses are located along the northeast and southwest shorelines of the lake. The shoal water substrates consist primarily of sand and gravel. Large stands of hardstem bulrush are located along various shorelines of the lake. Emergent aquatic plants such as hardstem bulrush provide valuable fish and wildlife habitat, and are critical for maintaining good water quality. They protect shorelines and lake bottoms, and can actually absorb and break down polluting chemicals. Emergent plants provide spawning areas for fish such as Northern Pike, Largemouth Bass, and panfish. They also serve as an important nursery area for all species of fish. Because of their ecological value, emergent plants may not be removed without a DNR permit. Rush Lake is a popular angling lake during both the open water and ice fishing seasons. The lake has a reputation as one of the best all-around fishing lakes in Otter Tail County. Northern Pike, Walleye, Largemouth Bass, Black Crappie, and Bluegill are the dominant species in the fish community of Rush Lake. The prolificacy of these species can be attributed to the abundance of suitable spawning habitat that is available. Walleye is a primary management specie in Rush Lake. Walleye abundance has historically been high. Walleyes ranged in length from 7.7 to 26.2 inches with an average length and weight of 13.7 inches and 1.0 pound. The 2009 and 2010 year classes appear to be strong and should provide consistently good walleye angling for several years. Age data from recent lake surveys indicate that walleye natural reproduction is substantial enough to consistently maintain the walleye population at or above DNR management goals. Walleyes attain an average length of 13.9 inches at four years of age. Northern pike abundance has historically remained at a low to moderate density. The size structure of the northern pike population has consistently been poor. Pike ranged in length from 15.4 to 29.6 inches with an average length and weight of 21.2 inches and 2.0 pounds. Pike exhibit moderate growth with an average length of 22.1 inches at four years of age. Bluegill abundance and size structure has historically fluctuated due to inconsistent reproduction. Bluegill abundance in this survey was within the normal range for this lake type and size structure was good. Forty-six percent of the Bluegills were 7.0 inches or greater in length. Bluegills exhibit good growth rates with an average length of 7.4 inches at six years of age. Summer test-net indices are not reliable indicators of largemouth bass or black crappie abundance and size structure; however, angler reports on these species have been positive. Anglers can maintain the quality of fishing in Rush Lake by practicing selective harvest. Selective harvest encourages the release of medium to large-size fish while allowing the harvest of more abundant smaller fish for table fare. Releasing the medium to large fish will ensure that lake will have enough spawning age fish on an annual basis and will provide anglers with more opportunities to catch large fish in the future.


For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
1509 1st Ave N
Fergus Falls, MN 56537
Phone: (218) 739-7576
Internet: Fergus Falls Fisheries
E-Mail: FergusFalls.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 B0229 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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