Fishing season opens: State stocks waterways with trout
Opening Day of the trout fishing season in Connecticut is Saturday, April 20. Officials from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) say the state’s rivers, streams, lakes and ponds are stocked and ready.
About 381,000 trout have been released this spring into 102 lakes and ponds and 200 rivers and streams throughout Connecticut — and are awaiting opening day anglers.
The DEEP’s spring trout stocking effort began in early March and will continue through the end of May. When the spring stockings are completed, the agency expects to have stocked more than 630,000 trout.
Among the best places for families to fish on opening day are the designated trout parks. “Trout parks are easily accessible, have picnic areas and other amenities nearby, and are stocked frequently so that there are plenty of trout for children, families and novice anglers to catch,” said Bill Hyatt, chief of DEEP’s Bureau of Natural Resources.
“And as an added feature, families will be able to help stock trout at eight of the trout parks on opening day,” Hyatt said. “We have found that these stockings are a real highlight for many families.”
Trout parks in this area to be stocked again on opening day, with approximate times for stocking, are:
— Great Hollow Lake at Wolfe Park in Monroe (8:30 a.m.)
— Southford Falls State Park in Oxford (10:30 a.m.)
— Black Rock Pond in Watertown (10–10:30 a.m.)
— Wharton Brook State Park in Wallingford (8:30 a.m.)
Seeforellen-strain broodstock brown trout
Among the recently stocked trout are nearly 250 seeforellen-strain broodstock brown trout from the state’s Kensington State Fish Hatchery that were released into nine lakes throughout Connecticut. When released, they generally weighed from 4 to 14 pounds each.
Each trout park being stocked on opening day also will be stocked with 7 to 10 seeforellen broodstock.
Locally, the seeforellen broodstock stocking times will differ from when other kinds of trout will be stocked. At Great Hollow Lake in Monroe, the seeforellens will be stocked at 10 a.m., and at Southford Falls they will be stocked at 8:30 a.m.
Regulations and licenses
Many trout fishing areas do have special regulations, including trout parks (two trout per day creel limit), trout management areas, trophy trout streams, sea-run trout streams, and wild trout management areas.
Anglers can purchase their 2013 fishing licenses directly online, or at one of the many participating town halls, tackle retailers and DEEP offices. For a complete list of vendors, go to the DEEP website (www.ct.gov/deep/fishing) or call DEEP Licensing and Revenue (860-424-3105).
Information and maps
Anglers should consult the 2013 Connecticut Angler’s Guide for detailed information on specific locations and angling regulations. Look at an electronic version at www.ct.gov/deep/anglersguide.
Print versions of the 2013 Angler’s Guide are available at more than 350 locations statewide, including town halls, bait and tackle shops, other vendors selling outdoor equipment, and commercial marinas and campgrounds.
Maps of all of the state’s trout streams and rivers showing the many stocking and access points can be found at www.ct.gov/deep/troutstockingmaps.
What is being stocked
The following species and sizes of trout will be stocked for opening day in Connecticut:
— 62,700 brook trout (10-11 inch)
— 195,600 brown trout (10-11 inch)
— 7,200 brown trout (12 inch)
— 1,350 tiger trout (10-12 inch brook/brown hybrid)
— 96,300 rainbow trout (10-12 inch)
— 16,700 rainbow trout(12-14 inch)
— 1,485 surplus broodstock (3-10 pound trout, all species)