Inside the Outdoors, April 14, 2017
The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) is considering raising its fishing license fees or cutting down the amount of trout that are stocked annually.
When one considers the state stocks 4.2 million adult trout from fourteen Pennsylvania hatcheries and nursery cooperatives, that’s a lot of fish. That amount will be placed in 720 water compounds. They will be stocked by thousands of volunteers.
The direction is swaying toward stocking less fish than to charge higher fees.
Forbes Trail Trout Unlimited member Scott Minster stated he’s all for raising the fees. Joe Kucinski, an Indiana angler, stated, “I don’t like either.” Of course who does! And Latrobe resident Terry Crawford also feels the rates should go up as opposed to stocking less trout. Others favor limiting the trout stocked.
As for me, this may not be the most popular answer, but I believe we would have more of a sport of fishing if the PFBC cut down on the amount of trout stocked in lakes.
Each year at opening day trout season, anglers are fishing arm to arm and the majority of fishers catch their limits in a short amount of time. As an outdoor writer, I yearly hear complaints of how people take fish home and then return for a second attempt to limit out. Other violations have been reported.
We know the waterways conservation officers can’t be everywhere. Even if others fishers observe a violation taking place, many won’t fess up to the situation.
Through my fishing experiences, there are plenty of trout to catch in streams and lakes, particularly the latter.
Being that the Loyalhanna is part of the Select Trout Program, additional trout are stocked in the Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only project. Also, Ligonier Outfitters adds trout periodically in that sectioned off waterways.
My conclusion: stock the streams with the same amount of trout in as much as they can swim up or downstream, but cut down on the amount of trout stocked in lakes. That will save money.
A free fishing will be held on Sunday, April 23, 2017, at Mammoth Park from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Registration is free for all ages and begin at Pavilion #12 at 7:15 a.m. Adults age 16 and over must display a valid 2017 Pennsylvania fishing license.
There will be a door prize drawing for all registered participants following the derby. All contestants must be registered by 12 noon to be eligible for prizes from Dick’s Sporting Goods.
For more information contact Westmoreland County Parks and Recreation at 724.830.3950 or visit www.co.westmoreland.pa.us./parks.
- Paul J. Volkmann
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