Goose Lake Fish Management

Quick Facts:

  • Fish surveys on East and West Goose Lakes have documented bluegill, pumpkinseed, green and hybrid sunfish, black crappie, perch, largemouth bass, bullhead, and golden shiner.
  • Several species of bullhead  are abundant in Goose Lake. Black, yellow, and brown bullhead have been documented since 2017.
  • East Goose Lake is on the Minnesota list of impaired waterbodies for high nutrients.
  • Bullhead removal took place in Fall, 2015 and Spring, 2016. Harvest efforts can remove up to 16,000 lbs. of bullhead.
  • Game fish are not removed during netting. 


VLAWMO capital improvement funds have been used in this effort. Licensed and permitted contractors conduct fish surveys and harvests.

Reason for project:

There are several species of bullhead that are native to North America. Each type of bullhead stir up lakebed sediment and uproot aquatic vegetation through their bottom-feeding habits. Nutrient-rich sediment that gets stirred up can increase the frequency and duration of algae blooms. Because of their negative effects on water quality when bullhead abundance is high, harvest is a common strategy to support game fish populations and improve water quality.

Goose Lake in White Bear Lake is on the State Impaired Waters list for high levels of nutrients. It  has been the watersheds goal to try to reduce these nutrient levels for in-lake as well as downstream water quality. Studies have determined that internal TP loading is affecting water quality – disturbed lake sediment releasing high levels of nutrients into the water column. Rough fish, such as carp, sucker and bullhead, forage in lake sediment while feeding. Large populations of these fish can cause problems in lakes due to the amount of sediment and nutrients these fish stir up in their daily feeding. 


Fish surveys were conducted in 2012, 2017, and 2019. A 2021 survey is being done with results expected in early 2022.


Fish management is an ongoing pursuit connected to supportive efforts such as establishing game fish habitat with aquatic vegetation.

2017 Fish Survey

2019 Fish Survey

Visit East Goose Adaptive Lake Management for more info. 

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Birch Lake Aquatic Invasive Species Efforts

Efforts to remove Eurasian Watermilfoil and Curly-leaf Pondweed

4th and Otter Woodland Restoration

A woodland restoration at a key location adjacent to Birch Lake in White Bear Lake.

Birch Lake Sand-Iron Stormwater Filter

An iron-enhanced sand filter at the intersection of 4th St. and Otter Lake Road. The filter helps reduce nutrients entering Birch Lake with stormwater runoff.

Birch Lake North Shoreline Restoration

A 150 foot stretch of lakeshore on Birch Lake, in White Bear Lake was improved in the summer of 2010. In 2011-2012, an additional 700 feet of shoreline was restored on either side of the original planting area.

Charley Lake Channel Restoration

The channel between Charley Lake and Pleasant Lake in North Oaks was showing signs of serious erosion.

Deep Lake Channel Restoration

This project will restore approximately 125 feet of shoreline in the Deep Lake Channel, just before it enters Pleasant Lake. The project will be completed in Fall 2015.
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