The stream trout population appears to have become extirpated from this lake as no fish were captured in either of the 12 trap nets or the two 24 hr gill net sets. Trout from the 2005 stocking of brown trout fingerlings, and the 2003 stocking of rainbow trout (Kamloop strain) were expected to be present in the catch. The absence of trout in the catch in this assessment follows a downward trend observed in the 2002 assessment when the trap net catch rate was only 0.8 RBT/ set. The reason for the decline and now disappearance of the stream trout population remains uncertain at this time. One explanation for the poor survival of trout may be caused by their confinement to warm water during the summer months because dissolved oxygen is not available in the zone of cooler water more suitable for trout. The dissolved oxygen measurements collected in early September indicated that trout were restricted to the top 8 feet layer of water in the lake. This condition probably existed during most of the summer months and confined the trout to temperatures ranging from 70 to 80 F throughout this period. Trout that are forced to remain in warmer than preferred temperatures for long periods of time can weaken their immune systems and increase the risk of bacterial, fungal, or viral infections which are much more prevalent in warmer water.
Another cause for poor survival may be due to insufficient oxygen levels under the ice during periods of heavy snow cover. Since no dissolved oxygen levels have been measured during the winter months this is also only a speculative explanation at this time.
There were several minnow species captured in trap nets and minnow traps that included central mudminnows, fathead minnow, northern redbelly dace, finescale dace, and brook stickleback. Finescale dace were the most abundant minnow species in the trap nets, 61.3 fish/set, and northern redbelly dace were the most commonly caught minnows, 210 fish/set, in the minnow traps. The presence of only these species, which are usually associated with bogs and small lakes where low oxygen conditions are common, suggests this lake also may exhibit similar conditions.