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[DNR] Mississinewa River trout stocking under review
Start Date: 4/17/2014Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 4/17/2014
Event Description:
DNR officials are considering ending trout stocking in a section of the Mississinewa River in southwest Randolph County unless interest in trout fishing on that stream increases.

The site along State Road 1 at the Randolph County Wildlife Management Area has been stocked with as many as 400 rainbow trout each spring since 2005. The trout are stocked the week before opening day of Indiana’s stream trout season.

Opening day of stream trout season is the last Saturday in April, which this year is April 26.

Although the initial stockings were deemed successful, lack of interest among anglers, poor habitat conditions, and low trout harvest have reduced trout fishing effort and catch in recent years.

DNR officials think the remote location, lack of public awareness, and fluctuating river levels limit angler use. Timing can also be a factor.

“Last year a flash flood occurred the day after the trout were stocked,” said Jed Pearson, DNR fisheries biologist. “We think many of the trout moved out of the area before opening day.”

Pearson said the clarity of the river is also reduced after rains due the amount of silt in the water. This limits the ability of sight-feeding trout to find bait.

The upper reach of the Mississinewa River also has been channelized. As a result, pools and riffles that would typically be present in a natural stream are less available.

Despite these limitations, Pearson said one goal of the stocking program is to provide trout fishing opportunities across the state. Most of Indiana’s 17 trout streams are along the state’s northern boundary.

“By stocking the Mississinewa we hoped to draw fishermen from nearby Muncie, Hartford City, and Portland,” said Pearson. “But that hasn’t happened.”

Even when river conditions were good in 2012, fewer than 10 anglers fished for trout on opening day. Only seven trout were kept.

“If turnout and harvest are low again this year, we may look to find an alternative site somewhere in the area closer to people,” Pearson said.

One option may be to stock the trout in a pond in a park-like setting where access is easier, habitat features are better, and more people live nearby.

“We’re hoping river conditions and trout fishing are better this year,” Pearson said. “If they are, we’ll likely stock it again next year and hope more fishermen take advantage of it.”

Anglers age 18 and older are required to have a fishing license and trout stamp to legally fish for trout. The daily catch limit is five.

The trout stocking site is 1 mile south of the intersection of S.R. 1 and S.R. 28, about 12 miles northeast of Muncie and 5 miles south of Redkey.
Contact Information:
Name: Jed Pearson
Phone: (260) 244-6805
State calendar entry type:
Press Release
State calendar entry category:
State calendar classification:
  • Agriculture & Environment
  • Tourism & Transportation

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