Fisheries Lake Survey

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Name: French

Nearest Town: Annandale
Primary County: Wright
Survey Date: 07/15/2013
Inventory Number: 86027300
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Public Access Information

Ownership Type Description
DNR Concrete The access is located on the west shore


Lake Characteristics

Lake Area (acres): 346.37
Littoral Area (acres): 156
Maximum Depth (ft): 50
Water Clarity (ft): 4.5 (4-5)

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


Did you know? Lake rehabilitation projects reclaim waters suffering from habitat degradation and overpopulation of some fish 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 Bullhead Trap net 0.11 0.7 - 25.7 0.97 0.3 - 0.6
Gill net 0.67 2.5 - 45.0 0.33 0.3 - 0.7
Black Crappie Trap net 2.22 1.8 - 21.2 0.27 0.2 - 0.3
Gill net 2.33 2.5 - 16.5 0.16 0.1 - 0.3
Bluegill Trap net 28.89 7.5 - 62.5 0.17 0.1 - 0.3
Gill net 3.33 N/A 0.20 N/A
Bowfin (dogfish) Trap net 0.22 0.4 - 1.3 2.87 2.3 - 4.1
Common Carp Trap net 0.44 0.4 - 2.0 7.98 2.6 - 6.0
Gill net 0.17 0.3 - 3.0 6.39 1.9 - 5.2
Hybrid Sunfish Trap net 0.44 N/A 0.25 N/A
Gill net 0.17 N/A 0.15 N/A
Largemouth Bass Trap net 0.67 0.2 - 0.7 2.15 0.2 - 0.9
Gill net 1.50 0.3 - 0.8 0.81 0.4 - 1.0
Northern Pike Trap net 0.33 N/A 2.96 N/A
Gill net 3.17 1.5 - 7.3 3.33 2.0 - 3.5
Pumpkinseed Trap net 1.44 0.7 - 4.2 0.18 0.1 - 0.2
Walleye Gill net 2.83 1.2 - 6.3 2.90 1.2 - 2.7
White Crappie Trap net 0.56 0.5 - 6.6 0.40 0.2 - 0.4
Gill net 0.67 0.7 - 10.4 0.50 0.2 - 0.3
White Sucker Gill net 1.17 0.4 - 2.2 2.39 1.5 - 2.4
Yellow Bullhead Trap net 1.22 0.9 - 5.7 1.00 0.5 - 0.8
Gill net 0.67 0.5 - 7.5 1.08 0.5 - 0.8
Yellow Perch Trap net 0.11 0.3 - 1.7 0.09 0.1 - 0.2
Gill net 3.33 2.0 - 27.9 0.10 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 3 1 1 0 0 0 0 5
black crappie 4 27 3 0 0 0 0 0 34
bluegill 146 127 0 0 0 0 0 0 280
bowfin (dogfish) 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 2
common carp 0 0 0 0 0 3 2 0 5
hybrid sunfish 1 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 5
largemouth bass 0 3 6 1 5 0 0 0 15
northern pike 0 0 0 0 1 14 5 2 22
pumpkinseed 7 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 13
walleye 0 0 0 0 10 6 1 0 17
white crappie 1 2 4 1 0 0 0 0 9
white sucker 0 0 0 0 7 0 0 0 7
yellow bullhead 0 1 6 8 0 0 0 0 15
yellow perch 12 8 0 0 0 0 0 0 21


For the record, the largest Bigmouth Buffalo taken in Minnesota weighed 41 lbs., 11 oz. and was caught:

    Where: Mississippi River, Goodhue County
    When: 5/7/91
    Statistics: 38.5" length, 29.5" girth

Fish Stocking Activity

Fish Stocked by Species for the Last Ten Years

Year Species Size Number Pounds
2013 Walleye fingerlings 6,491 433.0
2010 Walleye 11,745 8.1
2008 Walleye 23,450 16.8
2007 Walleye fingerlings 2,335 178.0
2005 Walleye 23,392 20.5

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
FRENCH
Wright Co., 86027300
Bluegill Sunfish   All sizes     Mercury
Carp   All sizes     Mercury
Crappie   All sizes     Mercury
Largemouth Bass   All sizes     Mercury
Northern Pike   All sizes     Mercury
Walleye   shorter than 19" 19" or longer   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
FRENCH
Wright Co., 86027300
Bluegill Sunfish All sizes        
Carp All sizes        
Crappie 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 07/15/2013)

French Lake is a 332 acre lake located three miles southwest of the City of Annandale. The has a maximum depth of 50 feet and moderate water clarity. French lake has a 5,442 acre watershed primarily composed of cropland (47%), pasture (12.9%) and forest (12.8%). A public access is located on the NW side of the lake. The lake is primarily managed for Walleye and Northern Pike, but Bluegill, Black Crappie, White Crappie and Largemouth Bass are also present.

Historically, walleye have been managed by fingerling stocking. Since 2003, the lake has been part of a statewide walleye stocking study evaluating the effectiveness of stocking walleye fry, frylings and fingerlings. Surveys have been conducted in several years during the study, most recently in 2011. As part of the study, French Lake was stocked with frylings in four of the last ten years and Walleye fingerlings were stocked in 2007. The walleye catch on French Lake has consistently been low. The catch in 2013 (2.8/gill net) was identical to 2011. Walleye ranged in length from 18.0 to 27.5 inches with an average length and weight of 20.2 inches and 2.9 pounds.

Northern Pike numbers in 2013 (3.2/gill net) were higher than 2011 (2.2/gill net) and within the expected range for lakes similar to French Lake. Northern Pike ranged in length from 19.1 to 32.7 inches with an average length and weight of 24.5 inches and 3.3 pounds. Forty seven percent were longer than 24 inches.

The Yellow Perch catch rate (3.3/gill net) declined greatly from 2011 (26.7/gill net), but was still within the expected range of values for similar lakes. Yellow Perch ranged in length from 5.5 to 6.6 inches in length with an average length and weight of 6.0 inches and 0.1 pounds.

Black Crappie numbers have declined in recent surveys. The 2013 catch (2.2/trap net) declined from the 2011 catch (7.2/trap net), which was the lowest recorded catch at the time. Black Crappie ranged in length from 4.4 to 11.0 inches with an average length and weight of 7.4 inches and 0.22 pounds. The White Crappie catch (0.6/trap net) was similar to 2011 (0.8/trap net). White Crappie ranged in length from 4.6 to 12.5 inches with an average length and weight of 8.8 inches and 0.41 pounds.

The Bluegill catch rate (28.9/trap net) increased from 2011 (19.4/trap net), but remained within the range of expected values for similar lakes. Bluegill lengths ranged from 3.5 to 8.5 inches with an average length and weight of 6.0 inches and 0.2 lbs.

Largemouth Bass are usually surveyed by electrofishing, which was not done in 2013. However, Largemouth Bass were caught in both gill nets and trap nets. Largemouth Bass lengths ranged from 8.2 to 18.4 inches with an average length and weight of 12.6 inches and 1.3 pounds. Other species caught included: Black Bullhead, Bowfin, Common Carp, Hybrid and Pumpkinseed Sunfish, 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 B0514 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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