Fishing season opens on Saturday; state is stocking waterways
About 389,000 trout have already been released this spring into 100 lakes and ponds and 194 rivers and streams throughout Connecticut in preparation of opening day for trout fishing on Saturday, April 19.
State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) officials said the trout-stocking effort began in early March and will continue through the end of May. When the spring stockings are completed, DEEP expects to have stocked more than 610,000 trout.
“Opening day is an exciting time for Connecticut’s many trout anglers, and they can look forward to exceptional fishing this season,” said Susan Whalen, DEEP deputy commissioner. “The fish are in excellent condition, all of our trout waters are stocked and anglers can enjoy a wide range of fishing options.”
Trout parks: Accessible, well-stocked
Among the best places for families to fish on opening day are the state designated trout parks. Trout parks stocked on opening day will receive 400 to 450 trout each.
“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, DEEP Natural Resources Bureau chief.
“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.”
Nearby trout park
Nearby state-designated trout parks and their approximate stocking times on Saturday are:
— Great Hollow Lake in Wolfe Park, Monroe, 10 a.m.
— Southford Falls State Park, Oxford, 8:15 a.m.
— Black Rock Pond in Black Rock State Park Watertown, 10 a.m.
— Wharton Brook State Park, Wallingford, 8:15 a.m.
All trout parks will be stocked several times through May.
What will stocked this year
The following species and sizes of trout will be stocked by the DEEP for opening day:
— 193,500 brown trout (10-11 inch)
— 107,700 rainbow trout (10-12 inch)
— 62,600 brook trout (10-11 inch)
— 15,900 rainbow trout (12-14 inch)
— 6,600 brown trout (12 inch)
— 1,500 tiger trout (10-12 inch brook/brown hybrid)
— 1,330 surplus broodstock (3-10 pound trout, all species)
Regulations and catch limits
Many trout fishing areas do have special regulations, including trout parks (which have a two trout per day creel limit), trout management areas, trophy trout streams, sea-run trout streams and wild trout management areas.
Anglers should consult the 2014 Connecticut Angler’s Guide for detailed information on specific locations and angling regulations (view an online version of the guide at www.ct.gov/deep/anglersguide).
Fishing spots near cities
The DEEP has again stocked a number of community fishing waters in time for opening day, part of a program intended to enhance fishing opportunities in Connecticut’s major population centers.
Lakes and ponds selected for this program are located in urban areas and are typically stocked with trout in early spring and channel catfish by early summer to provide a year-round opportunity for anglers of all ages.
Nearby community fishing waters are:
— Bunnells Pond, Bridgeport
— Upper Fulton Park Pond, Waterbury
— Lake Wintergreen, Hamden
For more information
Fishing and fisheries related information can be found on the DEEP website at www.ct.gov/deep/fishing.
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.
Anglers can purchase a 2014 fishing licenses directly online, or at participating town/city halls, tackle retailers and DEEP offices. For a complete list of vendors, go to www.ct.gov/deep/fishing.