Fish-stocking efforts at two locations in southeast Michigan – the Huron River in Oakland County and Spring Mill Pond in Livingston County – are postponed until mid-May. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources made the decision to hold off on stocking the sites because the release of these particular trout traditionally is a big draw for anglers.
“These fish are retired broodstock – the mature fish we use for breeding – and they provide a unique opportunity for people to catch large trout right away,” said Ed Eisch, DNR fish production manager. “Most of our stocking efforts are for smaller fish and don’t have that immediate angler impact, because they take a year or two to reach legal catch size.”
The DNR’s decision is in line with the recommendations of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The release of the mature trout at these locations likely would attract crowds of anglers, creating a situation where it would be difficult, if not impossible, to maintain effective social distancing – a key in decreasing the coronavirus risk to Michigan residents.
The DNR has stocked adult trout in the Huron River at Proud Lake Recreation Area and Spring Mill Pond at Island Lake Recreation Area for many years. The stocking normally occurs in March for an early catch-and-release season that typically starts April 1.
When stocking efforts at the two sites resume, a mix of approximately 3,400 adult brown trout and rainbow trout will be added between these waters. Every year, the DNR stocks millions of fish in hundreds of locations across the state. Explore fish-stocking efforts by year, location and species at the fish-stocking database, available on the DNR’s Michigan.gov/Fishing website.
For additional details on the coming fishing season, see the 2020 Michigan Fishing Guide at Michigan.gov/DNRDigests.