Fisherman On a Foggy Day

Lake Stewardship

All of us want to protect Pelican Lake. If you feel the same way, we encourage you to become a steward of the lake and its surroundings.

The basic idea of lake stewardship is to care for the lake. The land and wetlands around the lake are critical to the health of the lake.  A Boy Scout once said, “Leave it better than you found it.” Our Pelican Lake Association is trying to keep the lake in good condition, and possibly, improve it.

The phosphorus contained in rain runoff and spring-thaw runoff is the biggest threat to the lake. This phosphorus feeds the algae, which in most seasons, blooms in July and August.

In a bad year, we may see large amounts of blue-green algae blooms, which are dangerous to humans, as well as dogs. Algae serves as food for snails, which are a huge factor in Swimmer’s Itch. Watch this video to the left to see how the snail’s life cycle can affect your panfish. Keeping phosphorus out of the lake, as much as possible, is key to keeping our lake in good condition. If we all do our part, we can keep our lake healthy.
There are many things landowners can do to reduce the levels of phosphorus that flow from their land into the lake. “Our Lakeshore Connection” is a video that discusses just what some of these practices are.

Best practices have shown us that returning the lakeshore to a more natural state is something everyone can do in order to reduce the levels of phosphorus. Creating a buffer strip by planting native vegetation, rather than mowing grass to the water’s edge, helps to prevent runoff into the lake, as well as erosion.

Shoreland Investment
Healthy Lakes, a program funded by the State, can help offset the cost a landowner faces when undertaking a project to help limit the flow of phosphorus into the lake.  Four main projects are listed on the Healthy Lakes website and some of them are linked in the guide at the right.  Native plants by the lakeshore, rain gardens, water-runoff diversions, and French drains are some of these projects.  The Healthy Lakes Grant Program will help pay for up to 80% of an approved project; the Pelican Lake Association will pay for another 10%, leaving the landowner to pay just 10% of the total cost.  On a $1,000 project, the landowner pays, at most, $100.

Healthy Lakes
Shoreline Restoration

With the help of the DNR, the Pelican Lake Association undertook a shoreline restoration in 2014.  We encourage residents and members to stop by the Schoepke Town Hall on US Hwy. 45 to visit the restored shoreline, walk along the path, enjoy a rest on the park bench, or simply view all of the different species of plants there. Below are a number of photos with links to videos and information which explain the importance of good lake stewardship and what can be done to ensure that.

Restored Shoreline

MOSQUITO-SPRAYING COMPANIES USE HARMFUL INSECTICIDE!  PERMETHRIN is a synthetic pyrethroid insecticide and neurotoxin that is used by local mosquito-spraying companies.  Although this insecticide is more acutely toxic to children than to adults, the US  Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified it as a human carcinogen that has been shown to cause immune system damage as well as birth defects.  (Click on the Mosquito to read the whole article.)

View this video about the importance of our surrounding wetlands.

View this video about the Loon Watch Program, and the Loon Count that takes place every 5 years.  This count was last done on Pelican Lake in 2020, where 10 adults and 8 chicks were found, despite a downpour during a speed-boat race weekend.

Read the article “CASTING LIGHT UPON THE WATERS" to learn about a joint-fisheries assessment.

Fishery Status Update


Go to to learn about the importance and economic value of the lakes and rivers in Oneida County.                                                     

Pelican Lake Comprehensive Management Plan

Read this 2013 Comprehensie Management Plan completed by Oneida County Lakes and Rivers Association (OCLRA). 

Lakefront Property

Take some time to look over “Tips for Lakefront Homeowners” in this brochure from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Although this map from our 2013 Comprehensive Management Plan is not an interactive map, you can see that in 2011 the vast majority of Pelican Lake’s shoreline had been developed.  This emphasizes the importance of shoreline restoration projects to help protect and improve the lake's water quality.

Map of 2013 Comprehensive Management Plan