Walleye Stocking Program

The St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin have been actively stocking walleye in Northwestern Wisconsin lakes since the late 1980s. The Tribal Natural Resources program was established to work in cooperation with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources for the purpose of stocking walleye fry and fingerlings into area lakes. In the beginning, the St. Croix Tribe acquired the ponds to use for walleye rearing and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) provided equipment and technical advice to raise the walleye fry to fingerling size. The Tribe monitored the ponds throughout the summer and in the late summer Tribal staff worked in conjunction with WDNR staff, which provided equipment such as seines and harvest trucks, to harvest and stock the fingerlings into area lakes.

In 1989, the St. Croix Tribal Natural Resources Department developed an independent program by renting local farm ponds to raise walleye fingerlings for stocking. Each spring over the past 20 years, Tribal staff has collected walleye spawn from Big Round Lake, Polk County. The walleye eggs are incubated for approximately 18-20 days at which point the eggs hatch and walleye can be seen swimming in the jars. Tribal staff will then stock the 2-4 day old fry from the Tribal hatchery into the rental ponds, where the fry will continue to grow over the next 1 ½ to 2 months. When the walleye reach the 2" size, the Tribal staff starts collecting these walleye fingerlings from the ponds. Walleye fingerlings are stocked each year into lakes designated by both the Tribe and the WDNR for stocking purposes. Lakes to be stocked are targeted to support fisheries in water bodies that St. Croix Tribal members traditional harvest from and are not designated entirely as 'naturally reproducing' lakes.

In the past five years, St. Croix Tribal members have harvested 26,069 walleye from local area lakes during spring spearing activities. During that timeframe, the St. Croix Tribal Natural Resources program has stocked 887,407 fry and fingerlings into most of those same water bodies.

Since 1987 the St. Croix Tribe has stocked over 9.8 million walleye fingerlings and fry into 37 northern WI lakes. All lakes stocked by the St. Croix Tribe are utilized by both St. Croix Tribal members and the general public.

Walleye Stocked by St. Croix Tribal Natural Resources Dept.

  County Lake 1987-1998 1999-2008 2009-2014 2015-2020 Lake Totals
1 Barron Bear 23,315 135,449 53,745   212,509
2 Barron Beaver Dam 21,667 84,039 72,863 5,072 183,641
3 Barron Big Moon 0 16,561 0   16,561
4 Barron Granite 3,852 6,252 0   10,104
5 Barron Lower Turtle 0 4,186 0   4,186
6 Barron Prairie Lake 0 46,043 0   46,043
7 Barron Red Cedar 0 57,541 35,857   93,398
8 Barron Sand 25,593 39,161 12,035   76,789
9 Barron Silver 11,882 24,308 0   36,190
10 Barron Upper Turtle 0 35,763 10,168   45,931
11 Burnett Big McKenzie 58,646 117,022 45,388   221,056
12 Burnett Big Sand 118,253 86,027 12,463 679 217,422
13 Burnett Devils 64,171 116,334 36,857 15,271 232,633
14 Burnett Lipsett 11,554 48,115 17,946   77,615
15 Burnett Little Yellow 0 19,261 0   19,261
16 Burnett North Sand 173,284 168,980 53,585   395,849
17 Burnett Rooney 13,710 38,074 3,183 17,873 72,840
18 Burnett Upper Clam 12,134 0 0   12,134
19 Burnett Viola 2,500 0 0   2,500
20 Burnett Yellow 48,209 92,342 0   140,551
21 Douglas Red Lake 6,245 0 0   6,245
22 Polk Balsam 151,939 218,253 42,218   412,410
23 Polk Bear Trap 0 0 0 17,429 17,429
24 Polk Big Butternut 22,880 0 7,532   30,412
25 Polk Big Round 139,477 218,686 9,482   385,699
26 Polk Halfmoon 40,424 84,689 12,274   137,387
27 Polk Magnor 5,337 0 0   5,337
28 Polk Pipe 4,182 33,553 0   37,735
29 Polk Wapogassett 52,466 92,335 68,704 33,058 246,563
30 Washburn Balsam 0 9,226 0   9,226
31 Washburn Bass/144 5,207 0 0   5,207
32 Washburn Gilmore 4,732 0 0   4,732
33 Washburn Little Long 5,004 0 0   5,004
34 Washburn Long 82,095 445,392 0   527,487
35 Washburn Matthews 6,121 8,196 0   14,317
36 Washburn Middle McKenzie 37,712 33,931 20,103   91,746
37 Washburn Nancy 26,888 70,769 32,458   130,115
Grand Total: 4,184,264
Red totals indicate Extended Growth fish > 6"