Fish and Aquatic Life
Rice Lake is a 939-acre impoundment of the Red Cedar River adjacent to the city of Rice Lake. The water level is controlled by an 11-foot dam at the outlet of the lake. Ths impoundment is relatively shallow and portions of the lake are subjected to heavy growths of rooted aquatic plants. The Rice Lake Protection and Rehabilitation District was formed in 1977. In 1978 WDNR awarded the association a grant to conduct a management feasibility study on the lake. The feasibility study results and management alternatives report was published in 1983. This study documented the eutrophic condition of Rice Lake and the substantial sediment and vegetation problems common to many older impoundments. Mechanical harvesting of aquatic vegetation in problem areas was one of the management alternatives suggested in ths report. The Rice Lake District was also awarded a lake management planning grant in 1992 to assess weed harvesting operations on the lake, inventory land uses in the watershed and prepare a lake management plan. The Rice Lake District has also completed an aquatic plant management plan for harvesting, and applied for WDNR cost-sharing in the purchase of weed harvesting equipment.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Source: 1964, Surface Water Resources of Barron County Rice Lake T35N, R11W, Sections-several
A hard water drainage lake on the Red Cedar River. Bear Creek and the outlet of Stump Lake also flow into Rice Lake from t-he north. The 11 -foot public utility dam on the outlet of Rice Lake is controlled by the Northern States Power Company. Fish populations include northern pike, walleyes, largemouth bass, bluegills, black crappies, rock bass, pumpkinseeds, bullheads, white suckers, redhorse and bowfin. Located within the city limits of Rice Lake, most of the lakeshore has been developed by 11 resorts and 278 cottages and homes. There are also three boat rental places on the lake. The lake edge provides some habitat for muskrats, nesting mallards, teal, wood ducks and coot. A few Canada geese may also be seen on the lake during migratory periods. A total of 11 public access roads in Rice Lake offer access. Also, five city parks offer picnicking, boat launching, camping and swimming facilities. There is a total of 0.69 miles of public frontage on Rice Lake; this figure includes the access sites, parks and six undeveloped platted accesses.
Surface Acres = 1,064.0, S.D.F. = 4.47, Maximum Depth = 22 feet
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Rice Lake (WBIC 2103900) was placed on the impaired waters list for total phosphorus and excess algal growth in 2012. The 2018 assessments showed continued excess algal growth; new chlorophyll-a sample data exceeded the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use. Based on the most updated information, no change to the existing impaired waters listing was needed.
Author Ashley Beranek
Rice Lake (2103900) was placed on the impaired waters list for total phosphorus/excess algal growth in 2012. The 2016 assessments showed continued excess algal growth; chlorophyll sample data exceed 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use, however, total phosphorus did not exceed REC thresholds. Total phosphorus and chlorophyll data were clearly below Fish and Aquatic Life listing thresholds. Based on the most updated information, no change in existing impaired waters listing is needed.
Author Ashley Beranek
Wisconsin has over 84,000 miles of streams, 15,000 lakes and milllions of acres of wetlands. Assessing the condition of this vast amount of water is challenging. The state's water monitoring program uses a media-based, cross-program approach to analyze water condition. An updated monitoring strategy (2015-2020) is now available. Compliance with Clean Water Act fishable, swimmable standards are located in the Executive Summary of Water Condition in 2018. See also the 'monitoring and projects' tab.
agenda or attendance lists for workshops, planning meetings, and/or education events
Lake Management Plan Development
Wisconsin's Water Quality Standards provide qualitative and quantitative goals for waters that are protective of Fishable, Swimmable conditions [Learn more]. Waters that do not meet water quality standards are considered impaired and restoration actions are planned and carried out until the water is once again fishable and swimmable
Management goals can include creation or implementation of a Total Maximum Daily Load analysis, a Nine Key Element Plan, or other restoration work, education and outreach and more. If specific recommendations exist for this water, they will be displayed below online.
Monitoring the condition of a river, stream, or lake includes gathering physical, chemical, biological, and habitat data. Comprehensive studies often gather all these parameters in great detail, while lighter assessment events will involve sampling physical, chemical and biological data such as macroinvertebrates. Aquatic macroinvertebrates and fish communities integrate watershed or catchment condition, providing great insight into overall ecosystem health. Chemical and habitat parameters tell researchers more about human induced problems including contaminated runoff, point source dischargers, or habitat issues that foster or limit the potential of aquatic communities to thrive in a given area. Wisconsin's Water Monitoring Strategy was recenty updated.
Grants and Management Projects
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||033163||Rice Lake - Central Basin||5/23/1996||11/6/1996||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||033180||Rice Lake - Site B/Central Basin||6/12/1995||10/5/2021||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||033192||Rice Lake - North Basin||6/25/2001||10/5/2021||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044880||Rice Lake - South Basin - [Herbicide Monitoring Site B-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018075||Rice Lake -- Access at W Side Of Lake At End Of 20 1/2 20 1/4 St||8/25/2007||7/22/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018076||Rice Lake -- Access at W Side Of Lake Off Lakeshore Dr||6/27/2011||6/30/2012||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018221||Rice Lake -- Access at W Side Of Lake At End Of E Messenger St||5/31/2008||5/31/2008||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||033181||Rice Lake - Site C/South Basin||6/12/1995||10/5/2021||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10019706||Red Cedar River - Rice Lake -- Access||8/27/2011||8/3/2018||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044881||Rice Lake - South Basin - [Herbicide Monitoring Site C-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018524||Rice Lake -- Access at E Side Of Lake Off Zabel Rd||7/6/2011||8/3/2018||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018529||Rice Lake -- Access at W Side Of Lake Off Soo Blvd||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018531||Rice Lake -- Access at E Side Of Lake Off 21 7/8 St||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018532||Rice Lake -- Access at East Side Of Lake Near 20 1/4 Ave||11/2/2006||7/8/2017||Map||Data|
|5005427||Unnamed||10031155||Unnamed Trib to Rice Lake (north shore) - at Hwy 48||5/3/2010||10/25/2018||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044885||Rice Lake - Main Basin - [Herbicide Monitoring Site DamMB-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044879||Rice Lake - South Basin - [Herbicide Monitoring Site A-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044883||Rice Lake - ClearWater Bay - [Herbicide Monitoring Site CWBay-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044884||Rice Lake - Main Basin - [Herbicide Monitoring Site NarMB-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018074||Rice Lake -- Access - N Side Of Lake Off State Hwy 48||7/18/2007||8/24/2011||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10018530||Rice Lake -- Access at S Side Of Lake Off E Orchard Beach Ln||9/28/2007||8/23/2021||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10000650||Rice Lake (Barron County)||9/5/2000||6/5/2018||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10030247||Rice Lake -- Access at Stein Avenue||5/4/2009||8/26/2021||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10031154||Rice Lake - Stump Lake Narrows||5/3/2010||9/28/2018||Map||Data|
|2103900||Rice Lake||10044882||Rice Lake - South Basin - [Herbicide Monitoring Site CenSB-CC-16] ||5/11/2016||6/8/2016||Map||Data|
Rice Lake is located in the Brill and Red Cedar Rivers watershed which is 297.68 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (49.40%), agricultural (20.30%) and a mix of grassland (10.70%) and other uses (19.60%). This watershed has 264.90 stream miles, 6,282.34 lake acres and 15,832.05 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Medium for runoff impacts on streams, Medium for runoff impacts on lakes and High for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of High. This value can be used in ranking the watershed or individual waterbodies for grant funding under state and county programs.However, all waters are affected by diffuse pollutant sources regardless of initial water quality. Applications for specific runoff projects under state or county grant programs may be pursued. For more information, go to surface water program grants.