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Schmidt, K.P. 1990. Fishes of the Knife Lake watershed in Kanabec and Mille Lacs counties of Minnesota. Final report submitted to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. 13 pp.


The Knife River begins at Ernst Fool on the Mille Lacs Wildlife Management Area and flows 19 miles through Mille Lacs and Kanabec Counties to Knife Lake about five miles above its confluence with the Snake River near Mora, Minnesota.

During the week of 9 October 1989, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources chemically treated the entire Knife Lake watershed with rotenone to eradicate the common carp (Cyprinus carpio) which had become established in 1972 when heavy rains and resulting flood destroyed the original dam.

Beginning on 19 April 1989 and continuing through 11 October 1989, twenty-nine surveys were conducted to document species occurrence of nongame forage fishes. The purpose of these surveys, in conjunction with others conducted by the James Ford Bell Museum of Natural History and Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, was to provide a reference base that could be used to verify the elimination of native fishes, and ultimately, justify a reintroduction program which would attempt to restore the watershed's historical ichthyofauna.

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