Lake Mendota and Other Yahara Lakes
 

 

 History
 

Year

Importance

15,000 B.C. 

Madison area under 300m of glacial ice

10,000 B.C.

Glacial ice gone from Madison; Lake Mendota twice present size

3,000 B.C.

American Indian population flourishing

1,000 B.C.

First signs of Indian mounds

1800

First Euopean settler

1836

Madison becomes territorial capital

1848

Wisconsin becomes 30th state; Madison population 300

1849

First UW class for 17 students; Tenney Locks constructed

1855

Beginning of Lake Mendota and Lake Monona ice records

1877

First limnological studies (E.A. Birge)

1882

First noxious algae growth documented (Madison population 12,000)

1890

Carp introduced

1900

First limnology class taught at University by C. Juday

1920

Madison population 35,000

1928

Sewage diverted around Lake Monona

1940

Madison population 67,000

1958

Madison sewage diverted around Lakes Monona, Waubesa & Kegonsa

1960's

Eurasian watermilfoil invades Madison Lakes

1963

Limnology Lab constructed with funds obtained by A.D. Hasler from the National Science Foundation

1971

Waunakee & DeForest sewage diverted around Lake Mendota

1985

Madison population 173,000

1987

Lake Mendota Biotic Manipulation Program begins

1994

Lake Mendota Priority Lake Project begins

 

Ice Cover
 

  

Mendota

Monona

Wingra

Average days/yr

105

105

120

Maximum

161

160

164

Minimum

47

47

70

Average Freeze Date

20 Dec

15 Dec

27 Nov

Latest

30 Jan, 1932

30 Jan, 1932

29 Dec, 1877

Earliest

23 Nov, 1880

22 Nov, 1880

2 Nov, 1913

Average Break Up Date

4 Apr

31 Mar

29 Mar

Latest

6 May, 1857

4 May, 1857

29 Apr, 1881

Earliest

27 Feb, 1998

27 Feb, 1998

2 Mar, 1882