US Army Corps of Engineers
Rock Island District Website


Indian Slough Habitat Rehabilitation and Enhancement Project

St. Paul District

Pool 4, Upper Mississippi River, Miles 758 - 760, Buffalo County, Wisconsin, Congressional District: WI - 3




The Indian Slough site is located in a backwater area downstream of Lake Pepin in pool 4 adjacent to Big Lake on the Wisconsin side of the Mississippi River navigation channel, across from Wabasha, Minnesota.  The site lies within the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge.  Water from the main channel was being carried down Indian Slough, filling upper Big Lake with sediment and degrading fish habitat.

Quick Facts

  • Approximate Acres: 825
  • State(s) Covered: WI
  • Land Ownership: Federal
  • Management Agency: USFWS
  • Management Authority: Refuge 


  • Construction of a partial closure structure in Indian Slough. Dredging a 3,000-foot-long by 125-foot-wide channel in Big Lake Bay to create depths greater than 4 feet for overwintering of fish.
  • Using the dredged material to revegetate a channel maintenance placement site.
  • Constructing two rock riffle-pool areas in the slough.
  • Placing log snags along the shoreline of the slough to enhance fish and mussel habitat


  • The Definite Project Report was completed in September 1990.
  • Construction was initiated in September 1992 and completed in June 1994.
  • The Operation and Maintenance Manual was completed in October 1994.
  • Performance monitoring continues.