County: Palo Alto
Location: 3 miles north of Ruthven
Motoring Restrictions: none
Amenities at Lost Island Lake include:
- Boat Access
- Accessible Pier
- Boat Rental
- Picnic Area
- Accessible Facilities
- Hard Surface Boat Ramp
Spring 2012 D.C. Electrofishing Assessment– A comprehensive survey was scheduled for Lost Island Lake during the 2012 season. D.C. electrofishing, the first component of the comprehensive survey was conducted on June 21st, 2012 to assess the subadultt and adult fish populations of Lost Island Lake.
For the fourth consecutive year, carp numbers declined during the 2012 D.C. electrofishing assessment. A total of 93 carp were sampled for a catch rate of 1.0 fish per minute (1.5 fish per minute, 155 carp sampled, 2011 spring electrofishing assessment) advocating a reduced carp population in Lost Island Lake. Since 2008, commercial fishermen have removed 738,341 pounds of carp and 531,886 pounds of buffalo, reflecting a decline of carp biomass from 393 pounds per acre in 2008 to 56 pounds per acre in 2012. Commercial rough fish harvest during 2012 was significantly curtailed, no doubt attributed to the low population level of carp and buffalo in Lost Island Lake.
Since 2008 sport fish numbers have substantially increased in Lost Island Lake. During the 2012 D.C. electrofishing assessment walleye, northern pike, bluegill, largemouth bass, channel catfish, white and yellow bass were sampled in various densities.
2012 Tandem Hoop Net Assessment –. Tandem hoop netting, the second component of the comprehensive survey was conducted on July 17th – July 23rd, 2012 to assess the subadultt and adult channel catfish populations of Lost Island Lake.
A total of 177 channel catfish were caught during the 2012 tandem hoop net assessment, a 7 fold decrease from the July 2010 tandem hoop net assessment (1,106 fish). A channel catfish population estimate was calculated from regression analysis obtained from channel catfish populations stocked in natural lakes within the Spirit Lake District. The channel catfish population estimate at 3 fish per acre declined (9 fish per acre, 2010 lost Island channel catfish population estimate), suggesting a diminished channel catfish population of Lost Island Lake, possibly attributed to angler harvest. RSD values reflect a fish population comprised of good numbers of angler acceptable sized fish. Quality (16.0 - 23.9 inches) and preferred (> 24.0 inches) size fish comprised 95 and 4 percent of the catch with stock (11.0 – 15.9 inches) size fish comprising the remaining 1% percent of the total channel catfish catch. Prior to sampling, Lost Island Lake was last stocked with channel catfish in 2008 which no doubt is the contributing factor in the reduced numbers of this size group. Length frequency analysis suggests continued good growth of the channel catfish population of Lost Island Lake. It appears that the channel catfish stocking has resulted in excellent survival and recruitment of these fish in Lost Island Lake.
Relative weight, (Wr) an indice of body condition reflects excellent body condition of the Lost Island Lake channel catfish population. Overall, Wr was 107, which is just above the target range of 95-105. A relative weight of 116, 106 and 112 for stock (11.0 – 15.9 inches), quality (15.0 – 23.9 inches) and preferred (>24.0 inches) size fish reflects a channel catfish population in plump condition.
Fa.ll 2012 Fyke Net Assessment - Fall fyke netting, the third component of the comprehensive survey was conducted on October 22nd – 24th to assess the subadultt and adult populations of Lost Island Lake. To improve the overall catch, sample sites were increased to 10 locations in 2012.
A total of 104 walleye were sampled during the 2012 fall fyke net assessment. A walleye catch rate of 5 fish per net was higher, but comparable to the lakes median value of 2 fish per net (0 – 6; lower and higher percentiles) suggesting good numbers of walleyes exist in the lake.
RSD and length frequency analysis reflects high numbers of small fish comprised the total walleye catch. Stock (10.0 – 14.9 inches) size fish comprised 77 percent of the catch, with quality (15.0 – 19.9 inches) size fish, which will be attractive to the serious walleye angler comprised the remaining 23 percent of the total walleye catch. Age and growth analysis indicates Age I – VII present in the sample in varying densities. The 2009, 2010 and 2011 year class comprised mainly of stock (10.0 – 14.9 inches) size fish comprised approximately 84 percent (22, 46 and 16 percent respectively) with the 2006 – 2008 year classes dominated by quality (15.0 – 19.9 inches) size fish representing 11 percent of the total walleye catch.
When compared to 2005 growth rates, age and growth analysis (2012) reflects improved growth rates of age I – VI fish, with growth rates comparable to other walleye lakes within the Spirit Lake District.
Overall, a relative weight (WR) of 89 is below the target range of 95 – 105 indicating a fish population in slightly less then desirable body condition.
Black crappie was detected in good numbers during the 2012 fall fyke net assessment.
A catch rate of 5 fish per net was higher, but comparable to the lakes median value of 2 fish per net (0 – 7 lower and upper percentiles) indicating good numbers of this species in Lost Island Lake, with catch rates comparable to the typical catch rates experienced in other crappie lakes within the Spirit Lake District. Length frequency and age and growth analysis reflect a fish population dominated by large fish. Quality (8.0 – 9.9 inches) and preferred (> 10.0 inches) size fish dominated the total black crappie catch representing 54 and 44 percent of the catch respectively. Stock (5.0 – 7.9 inches) size fish represented the remaining 2 percent of the total black crappie catch suggesting very limited recruitment of the black crappie population of Lost Island Lake. Relative weight, an indice of body condition was 104 indicating a black crappie population in good body shape.
Bullheads, comprised of black and yellow bullheads were detected in lower but comparable numbers during the 2012 fall fyke net assessmet. A bullhhead catch rate of 9 fish per net was approximately 2 times lower than the lakes median value of 19 fish per net (4 – 288 lower and upper percentiles), suggesting a typical bullhead population in Lost Island Lake. Large fish again dominated the bullhead catch with stock (6.0 – 8.9 inches) and quality (9.0 – 11.9 inches) size fish evident within the catch.
Northern pike, bluegill, yellow perch and white and yellow bass were also sampled in limited numbers during the fall 2012 fyke net assessment.
Rough fish comprised of freshwater drum and carp were also sampled; however, numbers were inadequate for proper interpretation of these species. It should be noted that large numbers of subadult freshwater drum and bullheads were noted in the catch during the 2012 fall fyke net assessment.
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Iowa-Caught Fish Are Safe to Eat, In Almost All Cases
The vast majority of Iowa’s streams, rivers and lakes offer safe and high-quality fish that pose little or no threat to human health if consumed. Some limitations may apply for young children and pregnant women. Here’s a Fish Consumption Fact Sheet from the Iowa DNR and the Iowa Dept. of Public Health for more information. Here is a list of current fish consumption advisories for Iowa lakes and rivers.