N.H. Weekly Fishing Report -- April 10, 2008

In today's report, Fish and Game hatcheries supervisor Robert Fawcett presents the annual plan for growing and stocking trout throughout the state, along with an account of installing the new water supply pipeline at Powder Mill Hatchery - quite a production! Also, fisheries biologist Matt Carpenter updates on bonus brood stock Atlantic salmon stocking.

Cool conditions continue to delay most stocking activity.  Last week, there were a total of 5 stocking events, all of them on the Sugar River and North and South branches of the Sugar River in Croydon, Goshen, Newport and Sunapee. We'll have lots more in the weeks to come.

Click here to sign up to get the Fishing Report in your e-mail each week.

For past fishing reports and all your NH fishing info, click here to visit Fish and Game's fishing page.

Purchase your fishing license online (CLICK HERE!), or from any Fish and Game license agent.  Annual NH resident fishing licenses are $35.  Resident one-day licenses are just $10. Annual nonresident fishing licenses are $53.  One-, three- and seven-day nonresident licenses are also available (click here for pricing and purchase info).  Why not bring a new fishing buddy on your next trip! Don't forget -- kids under 16 fish free in N.H.

Fish New Hampshire and relax... We have what you're looking for. tiny fish



We have what you're looking for: Quality hatchery-raised trout
By Robert Fawcett, Supervisor of Hatcheries

New Hampshire Fish and Game's Fish Culturists and Conservation Officers are releasing over 200 tons of hatchery-raised trout this spring. Whether you fish for trout in waters open to fishing year-round or trout ponds that open the traditional fourth Saturday in April (April 26 this year), Inland Fisheries Division Management will provide excellent angling opportunities. Stocking is delayed at least two weeks by wintry weather again this year. Things are still locked up tight. It will be a crunch to get all the trout ponds stocked by opening day. As of this writing there were still piles of snow blocking access, and ice on lakes.

THE PLAN FOR 2008 STOCKING CALLS FOR:
438,470 Eastern brook trout yearlings: 58.1% to streams, 41.9% to lakes and ponds; 14,515 two-year-olds: 39.4% to streams, 60.6% to lakes and ponds; and 1,685 "three-year-pluses" (surplus brood fish): 37.4% to streams, 62.6% to lakes and ponds.

Also:
* 277,925 rainbow trout (RT) yearlings: about 26.5% to streams, 73.5% to lakes and ponds.
* 132,120 brown trout (BT) yearlings: 58.3% to streams, 41.7% to lakes and ponds.
* 5,000 tiger trout (TT). Tigers are a cross between a brook trout male and a brown trout female, and have the potential to keep growing to a trophy size if not hooked and cooked at a younger age. They are up to size and being stocked in the spring this year.

This year's trout yearlings are more than ready to go. The fingerlings are outgrowing their raceways and need space in the larger pools, currently occupied by the ones normally distributed by this time.  There will be the usual nice big rainbow trout surprises in the southern part of the state.

The Fish Culturist's mission is "to produce fish of the right species, size, and timing to fill the gaps in the natural eco-cycle, to contribute to management goals for a wide variety of users, and restoration of self-sustaining native fish populations."

HATCHERY PRODUCTION PLAN NUMBERS FOR STOCKING 2008-2009
 
Berlin
Milford
Powder
New Hamp.
Warren
Twin Mt.
TOTALS
Brook trout - fingerlings
23,050
0
0
134,200
0
0
157,250
Brook trout - 1-year-olds
86,390
72,800
123,850
103,140
23,090
29,200
438,470
Brook trout - 2-year-olds
6,175
0
4,020
1,160
1,810
1,350
14,515
Brook trout - 3-year-olds
1,195
0
490
0
0
0
1,685
Rainbow trout - 1-year-olds
96,250
56,535
95,620
18,570
10,950
0
277,925
Brown trout - 1-year-olds
42,280
35,220
32,000
16,390
6,230
0
132,120
Tiger trout - 1-year-olds
0
5,000
0
0
0
0
5,000
Landlocked salmon - 1-year-olds
0
0
42,000
0
0
0
42,000
Totals by hatchery:
255,340
169,555
297,980
273,460
42,080
30,550
1,068,965

 
NEW WATER PIPELINE INSTALLED TO SUPPLY POWDER MILL HATCHERY!
welding pipes

The standard lengths of the 20-inch HDPE pipe were maneuvered by cranes, butt-welded together on land into three long sections, concrete anchors were attached, and the long sections of essentially one continuous piece of pipe were floated out into the lake.

moving pipes

The long sections were swung around using a small outboard motorboat, bolted together at flanged connections using a barge with a crane on it to lift and maneuver the pipe into position to reach out to the correct depth location for the water intake.

intake

The intake structure was the last to be manually connected.

sinking pipes
The pipe was sunk into position by letting the air out of the end.

FISH CULTURE 101
If a waterbody has plenty of natural habitat capacity to meet all phases of a fish species' life cycle, then fish populations are self-sustaining and don't need to be supplemented with hatchery-reared fish. But where there are gaps in that natural habitat capacity, hatchery resources are used to provide a fishery that would otherwise not occur for some reason -- for example, lack of adequate habitat for spawning or juvenile rearing, but plenty of habitat for grow out. "Room and board" provided by a hatchery stand in for natural habitat and food organisms. Fish culturists nurture fish eggs through the fry and fingerling stages, until they're large enough to be released and survive in lakes, ponds and rivers. This helps the cycle complete itself, and allows New Hampshire's trout and salmon fisheries to remain productive.

HATCHERY CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT CONTINUES
The new water supply pipeline for Powder Mill Hatchery was placed into Merrymeeting Lake bottom last summer. The standard lengths of the ID 20-inch high density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe were maneuvered by cranes, butt-welded together on land into three long sections.  The OD was 36 inches, making a 6-inch thickness to the walls and but welds. Concrete anchors were attached, and the long sections of essentially one continuous piece of pipe were floated out into the lake, and bolted together at flanged connections using a barge with a crane on it to lift and maneuver the pipe into position to reach out to the correct depth location for the water intake. The pipe was sunk into position by letting the air out of the end. It was quite a show, but few witnessed the spectacle.

Fish Culturists face challenges every year, and this next year will be no exception, having to manage around pipe consolidation projects, and installation of 24-hour composite sampler vaults, valves, and buildings at Warren, and Twin Mountain hatcheries for treatment and monitoring of discharge water. Composite sampling methods must begin after the extended date of November 30, 2008. There have been delays in designing treatment systems that will work.  Too little slope causes tail water conditions when pipes are consolidated, and too much slope requires energy dissipation, or surge protection to reduce the area required to handle volume. Environmental regulations limit the use of chemical treatments. All of these projects are necessary for future trout production.

Your local hatchery workers do a fantastic job of producing and distributing the large put-and-take trout you will have the opportunity to catch this spring. There's a lot going on behind the scenes to keep New Hampshire's fisheries healthy -- and anglers happy. Have a good year of fishing and enjoying wild New Hampshire.
 

Bonus Brood Stock!
By Matt Carpenter, Andromous Fisheries

This will be an exciting spring for Atlantic salmon brood stock anglers.  Due to some extra production at the US Fish & Wildlife Nashua Fish Hatchery, we have more than doubled the usual number of salmon available for stocking.  Up to 1,700 fish will be stocked in the Merrimack and lower Pemigewasset rivers at the end of April and in early May.  The most striking thing about this group of salmon is their variety.  Anglers will have a shot at catching fish that weigh anywhere from 2 to 18 pounds! 

Exact stocking days will depend on flow and staff availability, but our intent is to have fish in the river for the best spring weather of May and June.  With so many fish available, we will try to spread the fish out this season so that anglers can spend less time driving and more time fishing.  Potential stocking sites include the Pemigewasset River in Bristol (below Ayers Island Dam), the Merrimack River below Franklin Falls, Sewalls Falls Recreation Area in Concord, below the Hooksett Dam, and below Amoskeag Falls in Manchester.  Click here for more info or to download a map and list of access points.

If you have never tried fishing for Atlantic salmon in New Hampshire, this is a great year to buy a permit.  Your chances this spring have never been better.  For all those faithful veterans of the brood stock program, enjoy the extra fish and good luck in your quest for that 18-pounder!

 

 

 

 

 

<Go to the main N.H. Fishing page>


A User-Pay, User-Benefit Program
Researching and managing fisheries and teaching people about aquatic ecosystems are funded by your license dollars and by the Federal Aid in Sport Fish and Wildlife Restoration Program. Your purchases of fishing equipment and motorboat fuels make a difference to New Hampshire's fisheries. Click here to learn more.


About Us
 
NH Fish and Game Dept.
11 Hazen Drive
Concord, NH 03301

603-271-3421
top bottom background image