Something fishy — spring trout stock arrives on Martha's Vineyard
VIdeo by Ralph Stewart
Forget the peepers and crocuses. For Martha's Vineyard fishermen, a more tangible sign of spring is the welcome arrival of trout. Let the season begin.
A Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife (DFW) trout tanker truck arrived last Thursday with approximately 800 trout, fresh from the Sandwich State Fish Hatchery. Fishermen were not far behind.
In the first of three stockings this spring, the truck delivered a mix of rainbow trout, brook trout, and tiger trout.
The first stop was Duarte's Pond in West Tisbury, followed by Uncle Seth's and Old Mill ponds in West Tisbury, and Upper Lagoon Pond at the head of Lagoon Pond in Oak Bluffs.
Fishermen are allowed a limit of three trout per day. Fishermen 15 years of age and older must have a Massachusetts freshwater fishing license. Licenses are available from town clerks and online. Fishing and sporting license buyers pay for the stocked trout.
The southeast wildlife district is responsible for managing the fisheries and wildlife of Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Plymouth, and Nantucket counties. MassWildlife is supported by license buyers and federal taxes on fishing equipment (Wallop-Breaux) and hunting equipment (Pittman-Robertson).
The trout stocking program is not supported by the state's general tax fund, although it helps generate significant sales tax and other revenue, which is deposited in the state's general fund, from sales of fishing tackle, equipment, gas, food, and lodging used by anglers in pursuit of their quarry, according to DFW.
The Sandwich Hatchery produces brown trout — 9,000 averaging nine inches, 9,000 averaging 13 inches, and 100 broodstock browns averaging 18 inches — for stocking in Cape and islands ponds.
For more information, go to: mass.gov/masswildlife.