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Fish Stocking

Fall 2020

Walleye Stocking on Boulder Lake   by Robert Wolf

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has Boulder Lake on an every other year walleye stocking schedule.  There are 4 fish stocking sizes.  Fry (newly hatched fish about 3/8 of an inch long), Fingerlings (one to six months old and between 3” and 8” long), Yearlings (at least one year old and average between 6” and 12” in length) and Adult (fish that have reached maturity).  Walleyes take an average of 4 to 6 years to reach maturity.  Males can live between 15 to 20 years and females up to 25 years.

During the last 5 stocking cycles (2020, 2018, 2016, 2014 and 2012), Boulder Lake has received on average a combined total of 180 lbs. of fingerlings or yearlings per cycle.  In 2012 Boulder was stocked with 180 lbs. or 1211 yearlings.  In 2014 there was a mix of yearlings and fingerlings totaling 180 lbs.   In 2016 (4608 fingerlings), 2018 (5558 fingerlings) and in 2020 180 lbs. of fingerlings were released.  I’ll let you determined how the DNR counted the fingerlings!  There is a scientific method for this.

During a typical stocking the fish are transported in oxygenated water by a tank truck and pumped directly into the lake.  The entire process takes less than 30 minutes.  A few scales are also taken from several fish along with length and weight to establish a baseline for future comparison.   Like tree rings, scales can be used to determine the age and health of the fish.  Scales have growth rings and the width between them can be used to interrupt the health of the fish and lake.

Information about stocking can be accessed by using the link to LakeFinder on the MN DNR home page.  This site provides a wealth of information about any lake in Minnesota ranging from fish stocking and surveys to water levels and quality.

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