Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Namakan

Nearest Town: Ray
Primary County: St. Louis
Survey Date: 09/19/2013
Inventory Number: 69069300

Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
Unknown Channel Access gained via boating from connected waters (e.g. Kabetogama and Crane 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): 24065.75
Littoral Area (acres): 5026
Maximum Depth (ft): 150
Water Clarity (ft): 10.7 (9.5-12.5)

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


Did you know? The state operates 17 hatcheries: 5 for trout and salmon and 12 for coolwater species.

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 Crappie Gill net 0.45 0.2 - 0.8 0.28 0.2 - 0.6
Bluegill Gill net 0.05 N/A 0.14 N/A
Burbot Gill net 0.10 0.1 - 0.3 1.40 0.7 - 2.1
Cisco Species Gill net 4.70 N/A 1.10 N/A
Lake Whitefish Gill net 0.50 0.1 - 3.0 3.49 0.9 - 2.8
Northern Pike Gill net 2.40 1.1 - 2.4 3.57 2.8 - 4.3
Rock Bass Gill net 1.50 0.6 - 1.6 0.26 0.2 - 0.3
Sauger Gill net 2.45 2.1 - 4.3 0.32 0.3 - 0.5
Silver Lamprey Gill net 0.10 N/A 0.03 N/A
Smallmouth Bass Gill net 1.40 0.2 - 0.6 1.07 0.7 - 1.2
Walleye Gill net 7.35 3.6 - 10.8 0.98 0.8 - 1.3
White Sucker Gill net 3.60 1.4 - 3.0 2.10 1.7 - 2.2
Yellow Perch Gill net 6.05 1.4 - 6.8 0.19 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 crappie 2 6 1 0 0 0 0 0 9
bluegill 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
burbot 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 2
cisco species 1 14 3 35 41 0 0 0 94
lake whitefish 0 0 1 1 3 4 1 0 10
northern pike 0 0 0 1 12 20 9 6 48
rock bass 7 22 1 0 0 0 0 0 30
sauger 0 9 32 8 0 0 0 0 49
silver lamprey 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
smallmouth bass 2 4 10 6 6 0 0 0 28
walleye 0 30 32 27 48 10 0 0 147
white sucker 0 2 9 8 48 5 0 0 72
yellow perch 22 86 13 0 0 0 0 0 121


For the record, the largest Northern Pike taken in Minnesota weighed 45 lbs., 12 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Basswood Lake, Lake County
    When: 5/16/29

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
NAMAKAN
St. Louis Co., 69069300
Cisco   All sizes     Mercury
Crappie   All sizes     Mercury
Lake Whitefish   All sizes     Mercury
Northern Pike     shorter than 28" 28" or longer Mercury
Rock Bass     All sizes   Mercury
Sauger     All sizes   Mercury
Smallmouth Bass   All sizes     Mercury
Walleye     All sizes   Mercury
Yellow Perch   All sizes     Mercury

General Population

LAKE NAME
County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
NAMAKAN
St. Louis Co., 69069300
Cisco All sizes        
Crappie All sizes        
Lake Whitefish All sizes        
Northern Pike   shorter than 24" 24" or longer   Mercury
Rock Bass   All sizes     Mercury
Sauger     All sizes   Mercury
Smallmouth Bass   All sizes     Mercury
Walleye   shorter than 21" 21" or longer   Mercury
Yellow Perch   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 09/19/2013)

Namakan Lake is located on the border between Minnesota and the Province of Ontario and is part of the Namakan Reservoir, which also consists of Crane, Kabetogama, Little Vermilion, and Sand Point lakes. There is no road access to several of the lakes. Thus, anglers gain access by traveling by boat from road access points located on Crane or Kabetogama lakes.

Black Crappie abundance was within the expected range for this lake type. Black Crappie fishing has become more popular recently on Namakan Lake, especially in winter. Most anglers have been attracted by the large Crappies present in Namakan Lake. The largest Crappie captured during the 2013 fisheries investigation was 10.0 inches.

Northern Pike abundance was slightly above the expected range for this lake type. The rule-curve used to regulate water levels was changed in 2000 to enhance Northern Pike spawning habitat. Long-term trends suggest that the change in water levels has improved Northern Pike abundance. Size remains impressive and anglers have a good chance to catch very large Northern Pike. The sample in 2013 included fish up to 43.0 inches.

Sauger are present but generally not abundant and sizes are small. The average size sampled in 2013 was 10.6 inches and the average weight was 0.32 pounds.

Smallmouth Bass is another choice for anglers visiting Namakan Lake. Abundance in 2013 was well above the expected range for this lake type. The average size in our sample was 11.7 inches, a fun size for anglers. Typically, anglers also catch some very large fish while targeting Smallmouth Bass on Namakan Lake.

Walleye abundance was within the expected range for this lake type. Long-term trends indicate at least a 10 percent increase in Walleye abundance since a size regulation was implemented in 1998. The regulation has also improved the size structure; older, larger fish are now more abundant. In 2013, 15 year-classes were present and age ranged from 1-19 years. The 2006 year-class was the strongest in over 25 years and remains prominent, representing 21 percent of the sample in 2013. Recent year-classes look promising as well, especially the 2011 year-class which represented 27 percent of the sample. Size in the 2013 sample ranged from 7.3-24.1 inches and mean weight was 0.98 pounds.

Yellow Perch abundance was within the expected range for this lake type. Currently, sizes exist that are attractive to anglers. The size range was from 5.4-11.3 inches and the mean was 7.2.


For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
392 Hwy 11 E
International Falls, MN 56649
Phone: (218) 286-5220
Internet: International Falls Fisheries
E-Mail: InternationalFalls.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 B0445 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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