Fish and Aquatic Life
Whitefish Lake, in the Couderay River Watershed, is a 799.57 acre lake that falls in Sawyer County. This lake is an outstanding/exceptional resource water under NR102 under the Fisheries Program. This lake is managed for fishing and swimming and is currently not considered impaired.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Source: 1969, Surface Water Resources of Sawyer County
Whitefish Lake, T39N, R9W, Section 12,14,22
Surface Acres = 917.3, Maximum Depth = 95 feet, M.P.A. = 40 ppm,
Secchi Disk = 14 feet
A soft water, drainage lake on the Couderay River watershed.
It has an outlet to Lac Court Oreilles and an inlet stream from
Sand Lake. The normal estimated outlet flow is 8.7 cfs. This deep
clear water lake has a fish population of walleyes, northern pike,
muskellunge, largemouth and smallmouth bass, bluegill, perch, black
crappie, rock bass, pumpkinseed, and bullheads. Cisco and
whitefish are common and the lake trout may have recently entered
the lake from Lac Court Oreilles. The rough fish species include
white suckers, redhorse, longnose gar, and a number of minnows
species. Except for a small shrub swamp of tag alder on the
northeast shore, the entire lakeshore is upland with hardwood and
pine vegetation. The beach edge is unsorted sand and gravel.
Rooted aquatic vegetation is scarce; however, there are a fewstands
of bulrushes and bur reeds on the west shore. Muskrats are common
and there are a few nesting ducks. The lake's primary waterfowl
use is by spring and fall migratory birds. There are 13 resorts
and boat rentals on the lake, and 53 cottages. A public access is
located on the south end of the lake off state highway "70-27".
Other than the access site and four other undeveloped platted
accesses, the lake has no other public frontage.
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Whitefish Lake (WBIC 2392000) was placed on the impaired waters list for total phosphorus in 2016. This lake was assessed during the 2018 listing cycle; new chlorophyll-a sample data were clearly below the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use and the Fish and Aquatic Life use. Total Phosphorus sample data nearly exceeded the listing thresholds. Based on the most updated information, no change in the existing impaired waters listing was needed.
Author Ashley Beranek
This water was assessed during the 2016 listing cycle; total phosphorus sample data exceed 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use and Fish and Aquatic Life use, however chlorophyll data do not exceed REC or FAL thresholds.
Author Aaron Larson
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.
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|
|2392000||Whitefish Lake||583088||Whitefish Lake - Deep Hole||7/14/1986||8/28/2021||Map||Data|
|2391900||Whitefish Creek||10044718||Whitefish Creek - CTH E (WHT-OUT)||6/15/2012||9/23/2020||Map||Data|
|2392000||Whitefish Lake||583031||Whitefish Lake - South / Center||4/30/1976||7/18/2013||Map||Data|
|2392000||Whitefish Lake||583226||Whitefish Lake - Whitefish Lake||Map||Data|
|2392000||Whitefish Lake||10019135||Whitefish Lake -- Access Off State Highway 27/70||5/20/2006||9/6/2021||Map||Data|
|2392000||Whitefish Lake||10005587||Whitefish Lake||4/20/1990||9/12/2017||Map||Data|
Whitefish Lake is located in the Couderay River watershed which is 212.25 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (64.90%), wetland (13.50%) and a mix of open (12.90%) and other uses (8.70%). This watershed has 211.96 stream miles, 18,300.76 lake acres and 14,697.69 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Low for runoff impacts on streams, High for runoff impacts on lakes and Low for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of Low. This value can be used in ranking the watershed or individual waterbodies for grant funding under state and county programs.This water is ranked High Lake for individual Lakes based on runoff problems and the likelihood of success from project implementation.