Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Pearl

Nearest Town: Cold Spring
Primary County: Stearns
Survey Date: 08/25/2014
Inventory Number: 73003700
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
DNR Concrete State owned boat ramp and parking area are located on the north side of the lake off of County Road 146.


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): 753.34
Littoral Area (acres): 511
Maximum Depth (ft): 17
Water Clarity (ft): 2.8 (2-4.1)

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


Did you know? MinnAqua Fishing: Get in the Habitat! has a Minnesota-base activity guide for teachers, scout and 4-H leaders, youth leaders, outdoor sports groups, or anyone interested in teaching others about habitat, stewardship and fishing.

Fish Sampled for the 2014 Survey Year

Species

Gear Used

Number of fish per net

Average Fish Weight (lbs)

Normal Range (lbs)

Caught

Normal Range

Black Bullhead Gill net 0.11 2.5 - 45.0 0.99 0.3 - 0.7
Black Crappie Trap net 0.58 1.8 - 21.2 0.30 0.2 - 0.3
Gill net 7.89 2.5 - 16.5 0.35 0.1 - 0.3
Bluegill Trap net 9.00 7.5 - 62.5 0.17 0.1 - 0.3
Gill net 9.22 N/A 0.19 N/A
Bowfin (dogfish) Trap net 1.08 0.4 - 1.3 4.47 2.3 - 4.1
Gill net 0.44 0.2 - 0.8 4.68 2.4 - 4.2
Brown Bullhead Trap net 0.08 0.2 - 1.4 0.66 0.5 - 1.0
Gill net 4.56 0.4 - 2.0 1.42 0.5 - 1.0
Golden Shiner Gill net 0.22 0.3 - 1.5 0.08 0.1 - 0.1
Hybrid Sunfish Trap net 0.67 N/A 0.54 N/A
Largemouth Bass Trap net 0.25 0.2 - 0.7 1.50 0.2 - 0.9
Gill net 0.33 0.3 - 0.8 1.65 0.4 - 1.0
Northern Pike Trap net 0.92 N/A 3.83 N/A
Gill net 13.44 1.5 - 7.3 2.44 2.0 - 3.5
Pumpkinseed Trap net 0.50 0.7 - 4.2 0.17 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 0.33 N/A 0.15 N/A
Walleye Gill net 5.44 1.2 - 6.3 1.77 1.2 - 2.7
White Sucker Trap net 0.08 0.2 - 1.0 3.51 1.6 - 2.8
Gill net 1.11 0.4 - 2.2 2.27 1.5 - 2.4
Yellow Bullhead Trap net 3.00 0.9 - 5.7 0.96 0.5 - 0.8
Gill net 15.44 0.5 - 7.5 0.65 0.5 - 0.8
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 bullhead 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1
black crappie 3 56 17 0 0 0 0 0 76
bluegill 106 83 0 0 0 0 0 0 189
bowfin (dogfish) 0 0 0 0 3 8 6 0 17
brown bullhead 0 1 2 37 2 0 0 0 42
golden shiner 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
hybrid sunfish 0 7 1 0 0 0 0 0 8
largemouth bass 0 1 0 3 2 0 0 0 6
northern pike 0 0 1 20 37 41 13 20 132
pumpkinseed 7 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 9
walleye 0 4 3 8 23 10 1 0 49
white sucker 0 0 0 3 6 2 0 0 11
yellow bullhead 1 52 73 47 0 0 0 0 173


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
2014 walleye fingerlings 8,423 548.0
2012 Walleye yearlings 11,569 514.0
2010 Walleye fingerlings 9,792 544.0
2008 Walleye yearlings 22 8.0
  Walleye fingerlings 8,108 356.5
2007 Walleye1 fingerlings 5,420 271.0
2006 Walleye1 fingerlings 4,000 200.0
  Walleye yearlings 73 77.0
  Walleye fry 600,000 5.7
  Walleye fingerlings 3,816 303.5
  Walleye adults 12 33.0
2005 Walleye fingerlings 1,450 72.0
  Walleye yearlings 43 35.0

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
PEARL
Stearns Co., 73003700
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
PEARL
Stearns Co., 73003700
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 08/25/2014)

Pearl Lake is a 733 acre lake located one mile east of the City of Marty in southeastern Stearns County. It has a maximum depth of 17 feet and 70% of the lake is considered littoral (< 15 feet deep). The lake is primarily managed for Walleye and Northern Pike and in 2009 special fishing regulations were enacted for these species. Regulations include: a 17 inch minimum size limit and 3 fish daily bag limit for Walleye and a 24 36 inch protected slot for Northern Pike (daily bag of 3, only one over 36 inches allowed). Pearl Lake was selected as a sentinel lake as part of Minnesota's long term monitoring program (SLICE). This means Pearl Lake will receive more frequent sampling of fish populations, aquatic vegetation and water quality to identify impacts of climate change, land use changes, invasive species, and other stressors.

Walleye have been managed through a combination of yearling and fingerling stocking since the 1940s. Since 1998, the Walleye catch has averaged 5.7/gill net. The 2014 Walleye catch (5.4/gill net) was similar to this average and within the range of expected values for lakes similar to Pearl Lake. Walleye captured ranged in length from 7.5 to 26.1 inches and averaged 16.6 inches and 1.8 pounds. Seven year classes of fish were captured with age 4 fish comprising 46% of the aged sample. Multiple year classes are a reflection of a healthy fish population. Forty percent of the Walleye collected were longer than 17 inches.

Until 1992 the Northern Pike catch was within the expected range (5.6/net). However, since 1992 the average catch has increased to 15.7 fish per net. The 2014 catch (13.4 fish/gill net) was lower than the 2013 survey (20.8/gill net), but similar to the average from 1998 to 2013. Northern Pike collected ranged in length from 11.8 to 39.0 inches and averaged 21.7 inches long and 2.4 pounds. Twenty eight percent of the northern pike caught were longer than 24 inches and 25% were longer than 30 inches.

Yellow Perch abundance has been less than one fish per net since the 1992 survey. No Yellow Perch were sampled in either the gill nets or trap nets. However, 45 were collected during fall daytime electrofishing. These fish averaged 3.2 inches and likely are too small to recruit to gill nets or trap nets.

In an effort to standardize bass electrofishing, seven random sites where chosen around Pearl Lake. Consequently, catch and effort data should not be directly compared to previous surveys. Spring nighttime electrofishing captured 26 Largemouth Bass ranging in length from 6.3 to 16.6 inches. There were 9 year classes present ranging in age from 2 to 16 years old. On average Largemouth Bass reached a length of 13.7 inches at 6 years of age.

Gill nets captured 71 Black Crappie in 2014 for a catch rate of 7.9/gill net which is above average for this lake class. Trap nets caught an additional seven Black Crappie. Black Crappie collected ranged from 4.5 to 11.5 inches long and averaged 8.3 inches.

The 2014 Bluegill catch (9.0/trap net) was low for this lake class. Bluegill ranged in length from 3.0 to 8.7 inches and averaged 5.8 inches. Nine year classes were observed, with age 3 fish making up 35% of the aged sample. Bluegill reached 7 inches in 4 5 years.

An Index of Biotic Integrity (IBI) survey was conducted using backpack electrofishing and seining in July of 2014. A total of 14 fish species were captured, including Banded Killifish, Blackchin Shiner, Blacknose Shiner, and Iowa Darter which are considered intolerant species. They are usually negatively impacted by poor water quality, so their presence in this survey is an indicator of good water quality. Other species sampled included: Black Bullhead, Bluntnose Minnow, Bowfin (Dogfish), Brown Bullhead, Fathead Minnow, Golden Shiner, Green Sunfish, Hybrid Sunfish, Johnny Darter, Pumpkinseed, Tadpole Madtom, White Sucker, and Yellow Bullhead.


For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
7372 State Hwy 25 SW
Montrose, MN 55363
Phone: (763) 675-3301
Internet: Montrose Fisheries
E-Mail: Montrose.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 C1994 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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