Fedji Lake, near the town of Madelia in Watonwan County, is a 184 acre lake with a maximum depth of 6 feet. Fedji Lake historically had a good population of yellow perch. Fedji has been used as a yellow perch source for stocking Windom Area lakes prior to 2010, however fish management has been limited on Fedji Lake because an official public access was not available. In 2001, a public access was built which made fisheries management possible. An initial fish survey was conducted in May 2002; only common carp, black bullhead, and one largemouth bass (suspected illegal stocked fish) were caught indicating a winterkill situation had occurred prior to the survey. At times abundant aquatic macrophyte community exists (18 species) in Fedji Lake and the lake is the only lake in the Windom Fisheries Management Area with white water lily present.
Fedji Lake has had a history of winterkill. Local reports indicated a substantial winterkill occurred during the winter of 2000 and 2009. An aeration system was purchased by the Madelia Sportsmen's Club to maintain the sport fish community. In collaboration with our office, the system was not installed in 2009 in an effort to reduce/remove common carp through a winterkill. In the spring of 2009 it was apparent a major winterkill had occurred. A population assessment was done during the week of June 1st, 2010 using 1 gill net and 9 trap nets.
Only black bullheads were sampled in the gill net and black bullhead and one yellow perch were sampled in the trap nets. Total lengths of black bullhead ranged from 5.0 to 8.4 inches with an average of 7.5 inches. The yellow perch was not measured. It is apparent that there was a significant winterkill during 2009-2010. No common carp were sampled and it appears the winterkill has reduced, if not eliminated common carp from Fedji Lake. Restocking took place right away in the spring of 2010 as walleye fry were stocked and adult yellow perch were stocked in the fall of 2010. The aeration system was operational during the winter of 2010-2011 and additional stocking will take place in 2011 to add northern pike and black crappie to Fedji Lake (as well as additional walleye). Given the little biomass of fish in the lake, with little resulting competition for food, the stocked fish should grow well and become fishable size within two years. The future outlook for fishing at Fedji Lake is good.