Fish population explosion

Submitted photos Submitted photos The long-awaited spring brought bad news to Little Elkhart Lake. As the lake ice receded, it was obvious that there had been a winter fish kill.

The Department of Natural Resources considered it to be close to 100 percent, meaning there would be no fishing season for some time to come.

Fortunately, the Lake Association along with the Sheboygan County Conservation Association and a most generous donor decided that was not to be the case.

On Tuesday, June 24, the campers, and guests at Camp Anokijig gathered to watch the introduction of 2,500 fish of various species to their new home (above).

This is the first of several fish stockings that are yet to come with the intention of establishing a fish population that will mirror the one that existed for many years. These miniature fish are the foundation school that will eventually grow and populate Little Elkhart Lake, making it possible to once again enjoy a day on the water at this beautiful Sheboygan County resource. Many thanks to all who made this happen.

Through the efforts of the Sheboygan County Conservation Association and with a 50 percent match from the Sheboygan County Stewardship Fund, the Sheboygan County Marsh was restocked with 1,500 perch (5-7 inch) and 1,935 regular bluegills (5-7 inch) Thursday, June 26.

The Sheboygan Marsh suffered a significant fish kill over the 2013-2014 winter due to a prolonged ice and snow cover which reduced the sunlight reaching aquatic plants. This reduced photosynthesis and oxygen production which was further complicated by oxygen-consuming decomposition leading to a significant die-off of fish at the Sheboygan Marsh.

The Sheboygan Marsh has been a longtime fishing spot for many Sheboygan County fishermen. It is one of the few good public shore fishing opportunities in Sheboygan County. It is a popular spot with anglers of all ages.

Fish stocking is one tool used to provide better angling opportunities when the resource has been negatively impacted by Mother Nature or other causes.

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