Cumberland River receives extra trout to boost populations affected by water quality problems
ONLINE UPDATE Feb 1
While last summer’s low water flows into the Cumberland River tailwater made it a fishing paradise for wading anglers, the higher temperatures that resulted downriver created stressful conditions for trout.
To help boost the trout populations in the lower section of the river, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources stocked 13,250 brown trout into the tailwater this week. The bonus stocking is in addition to the 38,000 brown trout normally stocked in March. The Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery, in partnership with Kentucky Fish and Wildlife, supplies trout stocked in Kentucky.
Water quality in the tailwater below Burkesville decreased last summer due to higher temperatures created by the ongoing work to repair Wolf Creek Dam at Lake Cumberland. The flow of cold water through the dam is being reduced because the lake is being held at a lower level while construction is underway.
Biologists did not observe fish kills in the tailwater last year. However, the higher water temperatures stressed trout, and researchers believe the fish responded by moving upriver. Kentucky Fish and Wildlife employees will stock the 6-inch brown trout at public access areas and boat ramps from Helms Landing downstream to McMillan’s Ferry. The March stocking will include 8-inch fish.
It will take several years before anglers may keep these fish. The Cumberland River tailwater has a one fish, 20-inch size limit on brown trout.
Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources personnel also stock 161,000 rainbow trout in the tailwater each year, beginning in April. All rainbow trout between 15 to 20 inches caught in the Cumberland tailwater must be released immediately. Anglers may keep five rainbow caught from the tailwater, but only one fish may exceed 20 inches.
Anglers fishing the Cumberland River tailwater from Wolf Creek Dam downstream to the state line must possess a valid trout permit.
The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
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Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
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