The reputation for catching bluegill at Pelican Lake was legendary. Sadly that reputation took a hit when a large influx of common carp over took the lake in 2008 and 2009 leading to a sharp decline in bluegill. As a result, the management team and the regional managers made the choice to treat the lake and restore the fishery. Trina Hedrick, regional aquatics manager for the Division of Wildlife of Resources, explains that “in 2016, agency representatives and anglers that make up the Pelican Lake Management Team made the decision to remove common carp from the lake. The only way to completely eradicate carp is through the use of rotenone. We needed to wait for low water levels, though, to ensure no carp escaped the treatment. This year’s drought dropped the lake to the target water levels.” Last October, the rotenone, a substance poisonous to fish, went into the lake and within hours clean up began. After getting the needed disease-free certifications and then collecting the adult bluegills and bass to restock the lake, things are looking good. The fish have even spawned with a very strong crop and there will be 80,000 bluegills added in September. The next project will aim to get rid of sediment.