Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: Osakis

Nearest Town: Osakis
Primary County: Todd
Survey Date: 08/16/2010
Inventory Number: 77021500
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
County Concrete
DNR Concrete
City Concrete


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): 6389.23
Littoral Area (acres): 3416
Maximum Depth (ft): 73
Water Clarity (ft): 3.3 (3-3.5)

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 2010 Survey Year

Species

Gear Used

Number of fish per net

Average Fish Weight (lbs)

Normal Range (lbs)

Caught

Normal Range

Black Bullhead Trap net 0.27 0.3 - 2.1 0.36 0.4 - 0.8
Gill net 0.33 0.5 - 4.1 0.57 0.6 - 1.0
Black Crappie Trap net 0.67 0.3 - 1.7 0.40 0.3 - 0.6
Gill net 3.73 0.2 - 1.1 0.27 0.2 - 0.5
Bluegill Trap net 5.40 3.7 - 42.9 0.09 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 6.60 N/A 0.30 N/A
Bowfin (dogfish) Trap net 0.20 0.3 - 1.1 4.82 3.9 - 5.1
Brown Bullhead Trap net 0.13 0.3 - 1.7 1.32 0.7 - 1.1
Gill net 1.27 0.3 - 1.6 1.26 0.7 - 1.2
Common Carp Trap net 0.40 0.2 - 1.0 8.60 3.5 - 7.4
Gill net 0.13 0.1 - 0.5 7.93 3.1 - 7.1
Largemouth Bass Trap net 1.80 0.4 - 1.4 0.21 0.3 - 0.7
Gill net 0.20 0.3 - 1.2 0.20 0.6 - 1.0
Northern Pike Trap net 0.40 N/A 2.99 N/A
Gill net 3.20 3.0 - 7.9 2.34 1.7 - 2.8
Pumpkinseed Trap net 1.93 1.6 - 6.9 0.07 0.1 - 0.3
Gill net 2.00 N/A 0.18 N/A
Rock Bass Trap net 0.07 0.7 - 3.3 0.94 0.2 - 0.5
Gill net 1.33 1.0 - 6.6 0.52 0.3 - 0.5
Smallmouth Bass Trap net 0.07 0.1 - 0.6 0.08 0.1 - 0.6
Gill net 0.33 0.2 - 0.9 1.31 0.9 - 1.8
Tullibee (cisco) Gill net 0.33 0.5 - 5.2 0.23 0.4 - 1.0
Walleye Trap net 0.33 0.3 - 0.9 1.45 1.0 - 2.2
Gill net 7.00 4.0 - 9.6 1.35 1.1 - 1.9
White Sucker Gill net 0.80 1.0 - 3.5 1.93 1.5 - 2.3
Yellow Bullhead Trap net 0.93 0.9 - 4.8 0.94 0.7 - 1.0
Gill net 15.27 0.6 - 6.4 0.83 0.6 - 0.9
Yellow Perch Trap net 2.67 0.7 - 3.7 0.13 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 33.47 7.1 - 33.9 0.17 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 2010 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 2 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 9
black crappie 43 2 19 2 0 0 0 0 66
bluegill 106 69 4 1 0 0 0 0 180
bowfin (dogfish) 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 0 3
brown bullhead 0 0 2 17 2 0 0 0 21
common carp 0 0 0 0 0 3 4 1 8
largemouth bass 16 11 1 1 1 0 0 0 30
northern pike 0 0 0 0 18 26 9 1 54
pumpkinseed 49 10 0 0 0 0 0 0 59
rock bass 2 11 7 1 0 0 0 0 21
smallmouth bass 1 2 0 1 2 0 0 0 6
tullibee (cisco) 0 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 5
walleye 0 1 1 38 65 5 0 0 110
white sucker 0 1 0 0 11 0 0 0 12
yellow bullhead 0 15 147 80 1 0 0 0 243
yellow perch 166 330 39 0 0 0 0 0 542


For the record, the largest Lake Trout taken in Minnesota weighed 43 lbs., 8 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Lake Superior, near Hovland
    When: 5/30/55

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2013 Walleye fry 68,306 1.0
  Walleye* fingerlings 8,789 315.0
  Walleye fry 6,746,000 58.0
  Walleye fry 48,427 0.0
2012 Walleye fry 6,832,000 26.3
  Walleye* fingerlings 7,839 305.0
2011 Walleye fry 6,832,000 58.8
2010 Walleye fry 6,331,482 56.4
  Walleye fry 500,000 4.5
  Walleye* fingerlings 7,800 300.0
  Walleye* fingerlings 30,268 2,000.0
  Walleye* fingerlings 28,285 1,416.0
2009 Walleye fry 6,828,881 68.4
  Walleye* fingerlings 3,800 200.0
2008 Walleye* fingerlings 4,750 190.0
  Walleye fry 7,000,000 59.2
2007 Walleye* fingerlings 12,001 406.0
  Walleye fry 7,002,076 65.1
2006 Walleye* fingerlings 10,000 400.0
  Walleye fry 7,002,350 61.0
2005 Walleye* fingerlings 2,279 106.0
  Walleye yearlings 58 52.0
  Walleye yearlings 4,772 1,518.0
  Walleye fry 7,006,608 63.0
  Walleye fingerlings 9,510 219.0
  Walleye adults 4 10.0
  Walleye adults 4,341 4,452.0
2004 Walleye yearlings 393 161.0
  Walleye fry 7,000,528 65.3
  Walleye fingerlings 46,464 2,699.0
  Walleye adults 1,684 2,289.0

Privately Stocked Fish
* indicates privately stocked fish. Private stocking includes fish purchased by the DNR for stocking and fish purchased and stocked by private citizens and sporting groups.

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
OSAKIS
Todd Co., 77021500
Bluegill Sunfish   All sizes     Mercury
Northern Pike     All sizes   Mercury
Walleye     All sizes   Mercury
White Sucker   All sizes     Mercury

General Population

LAKE NAME
County, DOWID
Species Meal Advice Contaminants
Unrestricted 1 meal/week 1 meal/month Do not eat
OSAKIS
Todd Co., 77021500
Bluegill Sunfish 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 08/16/2010)

Lake Osakis is the headwaters of the Sauk River. It is a 6,270-acre eutrophic (i.e., fertile) basin located along the border of Douglas and Todd counties just north of the town of Osakis. A small, navigable channel running under County Road 10 connects this basin to Little Osakis Lake. Three public accesses are located on the perimeter of the lake. During low water periods these accesses can be extremely shallow and launching larger boats can be problematic. Boaters should also be cautious of large rocks in shallow areas south of Battle Point. Most are marked with hazard buoys. Todd County's only county park is located on Battle Point. Amenities in the park include a public access, walking trails, picnic areas, and shore fishing sites. The shoreline of Lake Osakis is heavily developed. Numerous resorts continue to be in operation, making the lake a popular tourist destination for both anglers and recreational boaters. Recreational pressure can be heavy at times, especially during weekend days. Periodic algae blooms can diminish recreational pursuits such as swimming during late summer months. Lake Osakis supports a diversity of aquatic habitat. Submergent vegetation is common throughout the basin and grows at depths to twenty feet. Extensive areas of emergent vegetation are also present. Aquatic vegetation provides spawning and nursery areas for many fish species. Protection of these critical habitats is essential to maintaining a healthy fish community.

Lake Osakis supports a diverse fish community and offers a wide range of fishing opportunities. It is well known for its walleye fishery. Other species commonly targeted by anglers include bluegill, black crappie, northern pike, and largemouth bass.

Typical of most large walleye fisheries, natural reproduction contributes greatly to population abundance. The DNR stocks fry on an annual basis and fingerling stockings are prescribed following documentation of two consecutive years of limited contributions from natural reproduction and fry stocking. To help maintain quality of this fishery, a 15-inch minimum length limit is currently imposed on this lake. All walleye less than 15.0 inches in length must be immediately released. Walleye catches averaged 7.0 fish/gill net in 2010. Although walleye catches decreased from higher catch rates recorded during the 1990s, the 2010 catch rate is well within the range of expected catches for Lake Osakis and similar lakes (4.0 - 9.6 fish/per gill net). Size distribution of the population good. Sixty-three percent of captures exceeded 15.0 inches in length. Mean size was 15.6 inches and 1.4 pounds. Size structure reflects the contributions of strong 2006 and 2007 year classes. Three- and four-year-old walleye accounted for 75% of the total catch. Individuals from these two year classes should grow past the 15-inch minimum length limit in 2011. Because this basin is highly fertile, walleye and most other species grow relatively fast. Walleye usually exceed 15.0 inches between their third and forth growing season. Few old and large walleye were caught in 2010. Only 5% of the gill net catch exceeded 20.0 inches in length.

Lake Osakis is also well known for its ability to produce big panfish. Anglers seeking bluegill and black crappie will find good numbers of quality-sized fish. Average length of bluegill captured in gill nets was 6.8 inches. The largest bluegill measured 12.0 inches. Black crappie captures during the 2010 survey were largely young fish. Average size of the population sample was 6.9 inches. The largest black crappie captured was nearly 14.0 inches in length.

Largemouth bass catches averaged 17.0 fish per hour of electrofishing effort. Mean size of the 2010 sample was 13.4 inches and 1.6 pounds. The largest bass captured was 17.7 inches in length. Smallmouth bass are also present in Lake Osakis, but abundance is limited. Only six smallmouth bass, ranging in length from 5.6 to 16.9 inches, were collected during 2010 survey efforts. Northern pike numbers have decreased in recent years. Large pike were recorded in the 2010 catch, but the majority of the population was comprised of young, small- to medium-sized fish. Mean size of the 2010 sample was 21.5 inches and 2.3 pounds. Harvest of smaller pike from Lake Osakis is highly encouraged to help keep this population in check and to help increase average size. Yellow perch catch rates were higher than typical in probable response to decreased predator numbers. The proportion of harvestable-size perch has increased in recent years but the population is still dominated by smaller individuals.

Lake Osakis has produced some state record catches. The state record yellow bullhead was caught from Lake Osakis in 2002. This lake also produced the current state record rock bass.

Fishing pressure on Lake Osakis can be heavy at times, during both open water and winter seasons. To help maintain quality fishing experiences, anglers are encouraged to practice selective harvest. The selective harvest concept encourages release of larger fish while promoting harvest of more abundant smaller fish. Releasing medium to large fish will ensure that the lake will have enough spawning age fish and should provide anglers with opportunities to catch more large fish in the future.


For more information on this lake, contact:

Area Fisheries Supervisor
23070 North Lakeshore Dr
Glenwood, MN 56334
Phone: (320) 634-4573
Internet: Glenwood Fisheries
E-Mail: Glenwood.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 B0160 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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    Toll-free: (800) 652-9093