From the Fish & Wildlife Department:
A public meeting to discuss a proposed trout fishing regulation change will be held by the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Nov. 2 at the Riverton Fire House on Route 12 in Riverton.
The Dog River has long been considered one of Vermont’s best wild trout streams with a reputation for abundant wild rainbow trout and large brown trout. Electrofishing surveys and angler creel surveys conducted by Fish & Wildlife through the 1990s confirmed this reputation by revealing high trout densities, excellent natural reproduction, good growth rates and angler catch rates.
Rainbow trout have not been stocked in the Dog River since 1961 and all stocking in the Dog River and its tributaries was discontinued in 1992. Trout population surveys conducted on the lower Dog River annually since 1991, however, show there has been a significant decline in the number of trout over six inches in recent years. Many anglers have expressed concern about a decline in fishing quality. At the same time, some anglers and game wardens have reported large wild rainbow trout and brown trout being harvested annually, particularly in the spring.
A temporary catch and release or “no-kill” regulation is proposed to reduce the harvest of wild trout in an attempt to stabilize or increase fish population densities. Other potential limiting factors also will be examined, and habitat improvements will be made.
The restriction of fishing to the use of artificial flies and lures is based on extensive studies which have shown that trout caught with natural baits have a much higher mortality rate after being released.
The proposed regulation would be on the Dog River from the Route 12 Bridge in West Berlin (Riverton) to the Junction Road Bridge in Montpelier Fishing would be by artificial flies and lures. All fish caught would be released immediately.
The regulation would be in effect from April 10, 2010 to October 31, 2015.
For further information contact: Rich Kirn, Fisheries Biologist; Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife at firstname.lastname@example.org or (802) 485-7566.