The Iowa Department of Natural Resources will begin stocking trout in streams in northeast Iowa in a couple of weeks and plans to make some changes in the schedule.
DNR Trout Hatchery Manager, Dan Rosauer says the change involves how they let the public know about the stocking.
“Historically we’ve had streams that have either been completely announced or completely unannounced. And we are looking at making a hybrid of that this year,” Rosauer says. “Certain streams are going to be both announced and unannounced. One week it will be announced and the following week it is going to be unannounced when the stocking is.”
He says there are a couple of reasons for the change. “Part of that is to add efficiency in the hatchery. The other part of that is to bring up as many opportunities for our anglers as possible,” Rosauer explains. ” We have certain anglers who rely on that stocking schedule to find out where they want to go and fish. We have certain anglers that rely on that stocking schedule to avoid areas to fish, because they don’t want to find those crowds.”
Rosauer says there can be a big crowd when the truck pulls up to stock the trout and the number of people depends a lot on the stream. “We have some of our more popular announced stockings you might see between 20 and 40, some other streams we might see five to seven people on that stream during an announced stocking,” Rosauer says. The newly stocked fish are looking for something to eat and are ready to strike. But, Rosauer says you can have success trout fishing on streams that haven’t been stocked yet.
“Oh yeah, there’s plenty of success even the day before or the day of our stocking. I remember last year there were several events when individuals came to the hatchery at a decent time in the morning and they were coming from a stream that was going to be announced that day. They were going to wait for the truck to get there but decided to fish ahead of time. They caught their limits, and decided to go to the hatchery and check things out,” Rosauer says. Rosauer says you never can tell what you might catch.
“It’s fishing, so success might change with the day. But you should have a good opportunity to catch a trout in most of our stocked streams,” he says. Iowa’s three trout hatcheries produce and stock more than 300-thousand catchable-sized rainbow or brook trout and 110-thousand fingerling brown trout into hundreds of miles of northeast Iowa streams April through October.
A list of stocked streams is available on the DNR trout map or trout stream webpage at : iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Trout-Fishing.