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State Hatcheries are Ready To Start Stocking Streams

Concord — New Hampshire’s six state hatcheries have close to 1 million catchable-size trout ready for this season, with trucks ready to start rolling.

With cold, high waters from melting snow, it will be a few weeks before rivers and streams are at “fishable” levels. Most trout species are reluctant to bite until the streams reach temperatures in the mid-40 degrees F. 

“We don’t want to stock streams too early because cold, high water early in the season does not present suitable conditions for trout stocking, and angler access is limited until waters recede.” said Fish and Game Fisheries Division Chief Jason Smith.

“We’re fortunate to have Conservation Officers in the field who monitor water conditions and make the necessary adjustments to the trout stocking schedules for when conditions are right.”

New Hampshire’s designated trout ponds, which open on the fourth Saturday in April (April 27), should offer early season success.

“Our stocking crews do their best to ensure there are recently stocked trout in all of our designated trout ponds for opening day,” said Smith. 

“Proceed with caution, however, as some of the ponds harder to access due to road conditions. If we have an extended mud season, concentrate on ponds with paved access and go from there.”

Designated trout ponds are open through Oct. 15. 

As the season progresses, fishing picks up on smaller streams from south to north, with the larger rivers to follow. A good rule of thumb, says Smith, is to follow the black flies as they move north.