Friday, 17 August 2012 13:29
Manila — The daily bag and possession limit at Spirit Lake has been raised from four to eight trout.
The daily trout limit at Spirit Lake has been raised from four to eight trout.
Photo by Ron Stewart
The change will allow anglers to harvest more fish before a treatment project happens at the lake in September.
"Anglers should plan to catch and keep," says Trina Hedrick, regional aquatics manager for the Division of Wildlife Resources. "This emergency change will allow anglers to harvest fish that will be lost when the waters are treated."
While the emergency regulation change is only for Spirit Lake, anglers are encouraged to keep up to four trout at any of the waters in the treatment area, including all of the upper reaches of the Middle Fork of Sheep Creek. This area comprises about 8.7 miles of streams and nine lakes: Spirit, Jessen, Tamarack, Summit, Gail, Judy, Columbine, Lost and Hidden lakes.
Summit Lake is the only lake among the nine that doesn't support a population of fish.
"The trout limit is four everywhere except Spirit Lake," Hedrick says. "However, there is one exception. Anglers can keep a total of eight brook trout, no matter where in the drainage they catch them."
In September, all of the nonnative fish in the treatment area, including brook, rainbow, Yellowstone cutthroat and hybridized cutthroat trout, will be removed. A barrier, constructed in 2004, will keep the nonnative fish from reestablishing themselves in the treated area.
"The ultimate goal is to reproduce viable populations of Colorado River cutthroat trout in this drainage," Hedrick explained. "Colorado River cutthroat trout are the only trout native to the Uinta Mountains. This effort to restore a native fish to its natural waters will also help prevent the fish from being listed as an endangered species."
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