West Virginia’s trout anglers will get an early Christmas gift this year.
Because of a surplus of trout in the state’s hatcheries, Division of Natural Resources officials will conduct special trout stockings in 11 rivers this week. An estimated 15,000 pounds of trout will be stocked.
Jim Hedrick, the DNR’s hatchery supervisor, said hatchery production this year was good — almost too good, in fact.
“We need to make more hatchery space available,” he said. “When we get this many fish in our hatcheries, they grow more slowly than we would like. Stocking these fish now will free up some space and allow us to grow bigger fish during the spring stocking season.”
Hedrick said the fish would average about half-a-pound apiece, which means approximately 30,000 trout will be available to anglers.
The stockings will take place in the following bodies of water: Blackwater River; Cranberry River; Elk River; Elk River Catch and Release; Lower Shavers Fork; North Fork of South Branch; North Fork Catch and Release; Opequon Creek; Paint Creek Catch and Release; R.D. Bailey Dam Tailwaters; South Branch Smokehole Section; South Branch Catch and Release; Upper Shavers Fork; Williams River; and Williams River Catch and Release.