DEP ANNOUNCES EXPANSION OF TROUT PROGRAM
TROUT SEASON OFFICIALLY BEGINS APRIL 10
(04/30) TRENTON - Department
of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Bradley M.
Campbell today reminded New Jersey trout enthusiasts that
trout season officially begins in all waters open to public
angling on Saturday, April 10 at 8:00 a.m. By opening day,
DEP will stock 173,000 trout in the state's freshwater streams,
lakes, ponds and impoundments.
"New Jersey's sportsmen have been
looking forward to the opening of the 2004 trout season
for months," said Commissioner Campbell. "DEP's
Division of Fish and Wildlife has raised the watermark for
the 2004 season by giving trout enthusiasts increased chances
of catching broodstock and additional locations at which
they can catch both wild and stocked trout."
Commissioner Campbell and DEP Division
of Fish and Wildlife Director Martin J. McHugh will celebrate
the opening day of the 2004 trout season on April 10
at the Pequest Trout Hatchery and Natural Resource Education
Center. Opening Day festivities at Pequest will include
fishing, a screening of the Pequest film "Hooked
on Nature," and the presentation of awards to the
winners of the youth Fish Art and Essay Contest.
DEP has added several new twists to the
spring stocking program. New Jersey's 2004 trout season
will offer larger trout, additional fishing locations and
increased opportunities for wild trout fishing.
An increased supply of broodstock will
be allocated statewide by opening day. Approximately 5,000
broodstock, measuring 16 to 24 inches in length and an average
of two to three pounds, will be released in streams, ponds
and lakes throughout the state. Many bodies of water will
receive 30 to 50 large breeders rather than five to ten.
The additional breeder trout stock will greatly increase
an angler's chances of catching breeder trout in 2004.
The DEP also added a two-mile stretch of
the Passaic River from Mount Vernon Avenue to Route 24 between
Chatham and Summit to its list of stocking locations. This
section, which is known as the Passaic River-Lower, will
be stocked on the same days as the upstream stretch. It
will receive 2,980 brook and rainbow trout during the pre-season
period and four in-season weekly stockings.
DEP will offer ample wild trout fishing
opportunities in 2004. The following additional streams
have been designated under the Wild Trout Stream regulation
- The segment of the Saddle River stretching from State
Line to Lake Street in Upper Saddle River, which supports
- The section of Jackson Brook that begins at its source
and concludes at Hedden Park Lake in Mine Hill Township,
which supports brown trout;
- The portion of the Whippany River that originates at
its source and ends at Tingley Road in Mendham, which
supports both brown and rainbow trout. Tingley Road will
no longer be stocked with trout.
Angling in these waters is limited to the
use of artificial lures. A daily creel limit of two fish
is allowed from opening day of trout season through September
15, and angling at other times of the year is limited to
catch and release.
Some trout waters may be closed on specific
dates and times during pre and in-season trout stocking
periods. Please refer to the 2004 Freshwater Fishing Issue
of the New Jersey Fish and Wildlife Digest for information
on fishing specific waters and associated regulations. The
Digest is available online at http://www.nj.gov/dep/fgw/pdf/2004/digfsh04.pdf.
For a weekly updated list of waters slated
for spring stocking, call the Trout Hotline at (609) 633-6765.
Information on trout fishing, licensing and stamps in New
Jersey is available on the web at www.njfishandwildlife.com.