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DEP schedules fall broodstock Atlantic salmon stockings
DEP schedules fall broodstock Atlantic salmon stockings

By Department of Environmental Protection All 1,300 fall 2009 broodstock salmon to be released next week, No additional salmon stockings planned for 2009

The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) today announced the schedule for its annual fall stockings of surplus broodstock Atlantic salmon. DEP’s Inland Fisheries Division plans to release a total of 1,100 salmon into the Shetucket River and the Naugatuck River. An additional 200 salmon will be released into two lakes, Crystal Lake (Ellington) and Mount Tom Pond (Morris/Litchfield/Washington).

The broodstock salmon stocked in Connecticut are raised in state and federal hatcheries to provide eggs for the Connecticut River Atlantic Salmon Restoration Program. Surplus and spawned fish are then made available to provide a recreational fishery for Connecticut anglers.

All of Connecticut’s broodstock Atlantic salmon will be stocked next week (October 13th-16th). This is a departure from previous years of the program, when smaller batches of salmon were stocked on multiple occasions from mid-October into late November. This change is necessitated by the need to conduct essential maintenance of hatchery ponds at the Kensington State Fish Hatchery.

“Stocking of broodstock salmon has always been dependent, first and foremost, on the needs of the restoration effort,” said William Hyatt, acting Chief of DEP’s Bureau of Natural Resources. “This year the ponds at Kensington Hatchery will need to undergo cleaning during November that will make it impossible for us to hold and stock any post-spawn fish. As a result, all salmon stocking will take place during October. However, this year’s October stockings will total over 1,300 salmon compared to the 300 to 500 fish stocked in previous years. Anglers are encouraged to take advantage of this fall fishing opportunity.”

Anglers should expect that the salmon stocked this year will not be as large as many of the salmon stocked in the last several years. Typically, the fish released in Connecticut are two to five years old, and weigh from 2 to 20 pounds each. The 1,300 fish that are being released this week are younger fish, all between two and three years old, that range in weight from 2 to 5 pounds each.

For the third consecutive year, DEP will stock several lakes with broodstock Atlantic salmon. DEP began stocking surplus Atlantic salmon in 1992, and until 2007, all fish had been stocked only into the Naugatuck and Shetucket Rivers. However, in October 2007, salmon were stocked into Beach Pond (Voluntown) and Crystal Lake. Data collected following these stockings indicated that that salmon fishing in lakes might be popular. In 2008, the DEP stocked Mashapaug Lake and Crystal Lake on an experimental basis to collect additional data, which also indicated that stocking these salmon had created a popular fishery. This fall, two lakes will be stocked, one in western Connecticut (Mount Tom Pond) and one in eastern Connecticut (Crystal Lake). In addition, anglers may occasionally catch salmon that have held over from previous stockings of Beach Pond and Mashapaug Lake.

Anglers should be aware that the regulations for broodstock Atlantic salmon released into lakes and ponds are different from the regulations for salmon that are in the Naugatuck, Housatonic and Shetucket Rivers. In each lake, the regulations for methods, seasons and minimum lengths for salmon are the same as for trout in that specific water body but the daily creel limit is one salmon per day. As such, specific regulations for salmon fishing in Crystal Lake, Mount Tom Pond, Mashapaug Lake and Beach Pond can be found in the 2009 Connecticut Angler’s Guide and are provided at the conclusion of this news release.

Atlantic salmon broodstock stocked in the Shetucket and Naugatuck rivers are released into three designated Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Areas: 1) between Scotland Dam (Scotland) and Occum Dam (Norwich) on the Shetucket River; 2) the “Campville Section” of the upper Naugatuck River from Route 118 downstream to the Thomaston Flood Control Dam (Litchfield-Thomaston); and 3) the “Beacon Falls Section” of the lower Naugatuck from Prospect Street (Naugatuck) downstream to Pines Bridge Road (Route 42 bridge, Beacon Falls). Anglers should be aware that the section of the Naugatuck River in the Beacon Falls area along the RR tracks in Naugatuck State Forest is no longer stocked due to safety concerns.

Anglers are allowed to fish for salmon in the Naugatuck River from the confluence of the East and West Branches (Torrington) downstream to the Housatonic River (Derby). Anglers may also fish for Atlantic salmon in the Housatonic River downstream of Derby Dam. On the Shetucket River, anglers can fish for salmon downstream from the Scotland Dam (Windham) to the Water Street Bridge in Norwich (the first bridge upstream of Norwich Harbor).

In the Naugatuck, Housatonic and Shetucket Rivers, angling for Atlantic salmon is restricted to catch-and-release only through November 30. From December 1, 2009, through March 31, 2010, the daily creel limit for Atlantic salmon will be one. During the open season in the rivers, the legal method for taking Atlantic salmon is limited to angling using a single fly, or an artificial lure with a single free swinging hook and no additional weight can be added to the line above the fly or lure. Also, from October 1st through March 31st, fishing for other species in the designated Atlantic Salmon Broodstock Areas is restricted to the gear legal for Atlantic salmon.

The regulations for broodstock Atlantic salmon stocked into lakes and ponds will be posted at each water body. Anglers can also contact the DEP Inland Fisheries Division (860-424-FISH) for more information. All other regulations, including those for broodstock salmon in the Naugatuck, Housatonic and Shetucket Rivers, can also be found in the 2009 Connecticut Angler’s Guide. Guides are available from Town Clerks, many bait & tackle stores, or by contacting the DEP Inland Fisheries Division (860-424-FISH). The Angler’s Guide, Weekly Fishing Reports and news releases can all be found on the DEP web site at: www.ct.gov/dep/fishing

Regulations for Atlantic salmon fishing in Crystal Lake, Mount Tom Pond, Beach Pond and Mashapaug Lake are as follows:

Crystal Lake
- Legal Methods: Angling and Ice Fishing - Fishing with hook and line. May include fishing with bait, flies or lures.

- Open Season: Third Saturday in April through last day in March.

- Minimum Length: Salmon must be greater than or equal to 16 inches to keep.

- Daily creel limit: 1 Atlantic salmon

Mount Tom Pond
- Legal Methods: Angling and Ice Fishing – Fishing with hook and line. May include fishing with bait, flies or lures.

- Open Season: Third Saturday in April through last day in February.

- Minimum Length: None

- Daily creel limit: 1 Atlantic salmon

Beach Pond*
- Legal Methods: Angling and Ice Fishing – Fishing with hook and line. May include fishing with bait, flies or lures.

- Open Season: Third Saturday in April through last day in February.

- Minimum Length: None

- Daily creel limit: 1 Atlantic salmon

Mashapaug Lake*
- Legal Methods: Angling and Ice Fishing – Fishing with hook and line. May include fishing with bait, flies or lures.

- Open Season: Third Saturday in April through last day in February.

- Minimum Length: None

- Daily creel limit: 1 Atlantic salmon

*Beach Pond and Mashapaug Lake are not being stocked with broodstock salmon this fall. Both lakes have been stocked previously, most recently in April, 2009.


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