Lakes & Ponds

Aquatic Biologists, Inc. is experienced with a wide range of lakes and ponds, from small ponds to large commercial waterways. We are able to meet the desires of commercial properties, public parks and recreational areas, community lake associations, golf courses, and private lake owners. Our programs are tailored to include a combination of chemical, biological, and/or mechanical methods for the control of nuisance aquatic weeds and algae.

Most lakes and ponds require a water analysis on a yearly basis, monitoring of vegetation, safety requirements in beach and swimming areas, as well as fish management, and wildlife control.

There are many topics associated with lake management that are confusing. The majority of these topics may be easily explained with an onsite pond or lake evaluation. We can develop a site plan that will include a detailed wish list and timeline of future plans and improvements to your site. With this forward-thinking plan developed with the owner, this working blue print becomes the guide to the most cost effective and properly timed enhancements.

Ponds require regular year-round maintenance to retain their original characteristics and function.

Lakes and ponds serve a variety of purposes. Depending on their management, a lake or pond can serve as a source of irrigation, a water source for fire prevention, boating, fishing, swimming, or may be managed completely for aesthetics. The amount of attention, and the quality and diligence of management of these ponds determine whether or not your pond will serve the purpose that you desire.

To manage a lake or pond effectively, one must identify what its' purpose is. Each "purpose" requires different management techniques and methods. Typical "purposes" are:

Aesthetics - Intended to serve as a focal point in the landscape, provide a scenic view-shed for the property. Invasive and pest species are managed.



Fire Prevention - to provide a source of water for use during a fire, or emergency. A pump or hydrant was installed for drawing water off for this purpose. It is critical to keep all debris, or materials that can foul a pump clear of the pond. Invasive and pest species are managed.

Fishery - intended to be used as a sport fishery. The lake or pond is stocked with sport fish, and bait fish, structure is added to provide the fish with cover, breeding areas, and feeding. Fish consumption and replacement are monitored. Water quality is monitored. Invasive and pest species are managed.


Irrigation - managed intensively for irrigation supply. Water is collected, stored, and pumped from the pond for field, landscaping, gardening, or livestock use. It is important that the water meets the quantity and quality needs of plants or livestock. Invasive and pest species are managed.

Swimming - intended to be used as a swimming hole for family members, neighbors, etc. It is critical that all debris that can cause injury or entanglement are removed, coliform bacteria counts are observed and managed against, and maintenance of a certain depth are desired. Invasive and pest species are managed.


Waterfowl/Wildlife- intended to serve as habitat for a variety of wildlife. Food and cover are managed intensively. Invasive and pest species are managed. The pond may be used for hunting and fishing opportunities, or for non-consumptive uses.

Inspection prior to Land Purchase - A healthy well-maintained lake or pond on a property adds tremendous monetary and aesthetic value to real estate. Likewise, a poorly maintained water resource detracts from the value and can cost significant sums of money to repair. Just like the house inspection preformed prior to closing on a home purchase, it is crucial to request and have a pond inspection as part of that due diligence. Contact us today to schedule your inspection


Wisconsin Permit Applications for Lakes and Ponds

DATCP Fish Farm Registration Application - Register online or print and submit a Type 1 Fish Farm application to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection. Being registered as a fish farm allows you (and others) to:

1. Fish in the pond(s) without a license
2. Stock fish without a DNR permit
3. Fish in the pond(s) without having to observe season, size or bag limits

Please note that a WDNR permit and WPDES coverage is required for aquatic herbicide/algaecide use if a pond isn't completely contained on the property. There is a small fee for this permit which must be renewed yearly. Applicants MUST also fill out and submit the Livestock Premises Application below.

Livestock Premises Application and Instructions - This application must accompany the DATCP Fish Farm license application above and must also be renewed annually.

WDNR Fish Stocking Application - Online fish stocking application intended for ponds NOT registered as a DATCP Fish Farm. Must be accompanied by DATCP Fish Health Certificates from fish supplier.

WDNR Aquatic Plant Control Application and Permit/WPDES Pesticide Pollutant Permit Application - In the Wisconsin, all water must be permitted before any algaecide or herbicide treatment may begin. If the water to be treated leaves the property, individual WPDES coverage must also be obtained (unless owner is working with an applicator that has statewide WPDES coverage).

WDNR Large-Scale Aquatic Plant Treatment Worksheet - Must accompany the WDNR Aquatic Plant Control Application and Permit if waterbody is public and treatment will exceed 10 acres in size.

WDNR Herbicide Treatment Record - WDNR requires this form to be submitted no later than 30 days after each lake/pond treatment.

WDNR Mechanical/Manual Aquatic Plant Control Permit - This permit allows mechanical or manual removal of plants in a public water body beyond the 30 feet allowed under s. NR 109.06 (2)(a).

Wisconsin Pesticide Pollutant Discharge Permits- Also called WPDES permits, this coverage is needed if the water cannot be contained on the property.