Anglers fishing at Jacobson Park Lake in Fayette County should notice improved fishing in the near future. Jacobson Park Lake is the newest addition to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources’ Fishing in Neighborhoods (FINs) program.

Starting this October, rainbow trout will be stocked into Jacobson Park Lake to provide an additional fishing opportunity. Since trout prefer cold water, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife will stock the fish in October, February and March. A total of 12,000 rainbow trout that average 9-12 inches long will be stocked each year.

The lake will also receive four annual stockings of channel catfish. These fish will be stocked during the warmer months of March, April, May and August. These 9,200 catfish stocked annually will be 12-16 inches long and average 1 pound each.

The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government (LFUCG) Division of Parks and Recreation owns and manages this 46-acre lake.

Kentucky Fish and Wildlife recently partnered with LFUCG to include the lake in the FINs program to improve fishing opportunities to the anglers of Lexington and the surrounding area. “Jacobson Park Lake is a great place to take the family fishing without having to travel far from home,” said Fisheries Biologist Dane Balsman, who manages the FINs program for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife.

The goal of the FINs program is to provide quality fishing opportunities near cities of all sizes throughout the Commonwealth. “The lake receives a lot of fishing pressure and the added fish stocking should help improve anglers’ success,” said Balsman.

The lake has ample bank access for anglers. LFUCG Division of Parks and Recreation keeps the bank areas well maintained for anglers and there are plenty of shade trees available. Additionally, LFUCG is constructing a new fishing pier at the lake. There is also a boat ramp available for non-gasoline powered boats. There is a $3 launch fee to use the boat ramp. Parks and Recreation operates paddle boats rentals during season that generally begins in April and ends in September. Visit lexingtonky.gov for more detailed paddle boat information.

Fisheries biologists at Kentucky Fish and Wildlife need assistance from anglers. Researchers are trying to determine the catch and harvest rate of trout and catfish from the lake to guide future stocking strategies. To accomplish this, a number of trout and catfish stocked in the lake are marked with a small fish tag.

Kentucky Fish and Wildlife employees will insert yellow tube tags into 900 of the 12,000 rainbow trout that will be stocked in Jacobson Park Lake. Additionally, 900 of the 9,200 catfish stocked will be tagged with a small plastic disc tag. Each tag consists of a piece of plastic inserted into the back of the fish. Tags contain the department’s name, telephone number and a fish identification number. Anglers who return tags from these fish are eligible for a reward.

Anglers who catch tagged fish should return the tag to Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. For convenience, tags and fish information may be turned in at the lake using the postage-paid envelopes in the yellow drop boxes located near the parking lots. Anglers practicing catch-and-release may clip the tag from the fish before releasing it. Only one envelope should be used for each fish.

For more information on the FINs program, visit the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife web site at www.fw.ky.gov/urbanfishing.asp. Stocking dates are posted on the website a couple weeks before fish are stocked. Jacobson Park Lake is located on the east side of Lexington at 4001 Athens-Boonsboro Rd.

Daily limits for each angler fishing a FINs lake includes five rainbow trout, four catfish, one largemouth bass over 15 inches and 15 bluegill or other sunfish. A statewide fishing license is required for anglers who are 16 years and older. Licensed anglers who want to keep their trout must have an additional $10 trout permit. The trout permit is included with the senior/disabled and the sportsman’s license. Kids 15 or younger do not need the trout permit or a fishing license.

Logo courtesy Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife

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