A number of lakes and ponds in northwest Montana got bonus plants of fish as hatcheries prepare for winter. The Jocko River State Fish Hatchery in Arlee and the Murray Springs State Fish Hatchery in Eureka inventoried fish in excess of scheduled plants and are consolidating raceways for winter. Excess 5” rainbows were planted in a variety of lakes including Tetrault and Sophie lakes near Eureka, Lion Lake and Lake Five near West Glacier, McGregor Lake and others in the Thompson Chain of Lakes, and Triangle Pond and Frog Pond in the lower Clark Fork. Those fish will be catchable next summer. “We normally don’t do fall plants because food is declining and survival of stocked fish isn’t as high but these are bonus fish and the hatcheries need the space” explained fisheries manager Jim Vashro.
Catchable rainbows were stocked in Ninepipes Pond, Shady Lane Pond and Pine Grove Pond. “Those fish are a great opportunity for families to take advantage of these nice fall days” said Vashro. Pine Grove Pond will be open until late October and then close for the winter.
Logo courtesy Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks