This decision is based on data that indicates increased catches of wild lake trout in annual standardized nettings used to monitor the contribution of wild vs. stocked fish to the lake trout population.
Biologists and researchers say the stocking reduction must be taken to ensure a healthy balance between salmonine (trout and salmon) sport fish and prey. The stocking reduction will be achieved initially by eliminating lake trout stocked by DEC.
The observations of increasing wild lake trout production in Lake Champlain marks progress toward the restoration of a self sustaining lake trout population over the past 60 years a DEC announcement said.
DEC, Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department (VFWD) and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), in conjunction with Lake Champlain United, Trout Unlimited and Lake Champlain Sea Grant, are set to host a virtual meeting for anglers on the State of the Lake Champlain Fisheries on Saturday, March 27th from 1 to 4 pm.
Biologists, administrators and researchers from VFWD, USFWS, DEC and UVM will present on an array of trout and salmon fisheries management and research topics while fielding questions from the audience on this important fishery. Registration is limited to 100 attendees and can be completed online.
Photo of lake trout caught on Lake Champlain provided by DEC.