Improving Indian Lake Pt. 2: Planting aquatic vegetation

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Posted: Saturday, July 11, 2015 --- 3:20 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. -- A few months ago, we brought you the carp removal story from Indian Lake Park. The common carp was one of the biggest reasons behind Indian Lake's undesirable condition, but with the successful removal of carp, the lake is on its way back to top-top shape.

This morning, step 2 of that restoration process took place.
Over the course of the last few months since March, Indian Lake has come a long way, since the removal of the common carp.

"We saw a really turbid system out here that was really algae dominated. So removal of what we hope is most of the carp population, we've seen actually this year some of the plant community start to reestablish itself," said Pete Jopke, Dane County's water resources planner.

As the next step of the restoration effort, multiple organizations as well as volunteers are working to improve vegetation.

"These are native plants that are going to augment the habitat out here not only for the fish but also for some of the wild life as well," said Jopke.

Volunteers planted pond lilies. Pond lilies help create good habitats for desirable game fish.

"We all want it to be cleaner, we all want it to be healthy the goal is to bring this lake back to its natural state so there's all kinds of game fish here like there used to be," said Gerald Palmer, a volunteer.

Bringing the lake back to what it used to be back in the 90's will take at least several years. But Pete Jopke says it's worth it.

"It's a valuable recreational resource for us, it's one of the parks that was voted vest in WI in the late 90s, we feel it's appropriate to try to bring things back the way things once were."

As for the volunteers who have dedicated their Saturday morning, they also said it was worth their time.

"It would be neat to visit in a couple of years from now and see how its improved ask the folks in charge, what improvements have been made."

The DNR's fishery is working to put more game fish into Indian Lake with the ultimate goal of having it become a go to fishing destination in Northwest Dane County.