In 2020 we sent a press release to some of our regional media folks letting them know how in the middle of COVID, there have never been more opportunities for Albertans to catch a fish. And that’s important because there’s been a 30 percent bump in the number of Albertans purchasing fishing licenses this year.
We hope you all caught your limit!
Many of our private fish customers don’t realize that we provide fish for stocking public ponds and lakes across the province. Government stocking is a big part of fish farming as an agricultural sector. The provincial government operates hatcheries and it also works to purchase fish from our industry for publicly stocked and managed water bodies. Due to the increase in the number of people purchasing fishing licenses, our industry provided more trout than ever to towns and rural municipalities around Alberta.
Packing up and Moving Out. Fish were hand loaded into this custom transport truck by Alberta Environment and Parks
In addition to stocking lakes in the spring, larger community ponds have the right ecosystem to safely maintain fish during the winter. This creates the opportunity to stock 20 cm (or larger) rainbow trout in the fall. For anglers, these are prime stock for ice fishing catch and release in winter 2020/21 and larger catches in spring and summer, 2021.
We believe in recognizing when things go well. And, we believe that creating opportunities for Albertans from all walks of life to participate in sport-fishing is a good thing. As Alberta farmers who operate an aquaculture facility, we’re proud to bring attention to the success of this collaboration between the Alberta Government and our industry. Specifically, we’d like to thank Environment and Parks Minister, Jason Nixon who made sure some extra fish found new homes this fall.
You may recognize your hometown as having one of the water bodies where Smoky Trout’s rainbows were fall-stocked:
- Riverstone Pond,
- Morinville Lake (Heritage Lake),
- Morinville Fish and Game Pond,
- Pleasure Island,
- Black Nugget Mine Pit,
- Hasse Lake,
- Diplomat Mine Pond,
- Genesee Trout Pond,
- Dickson Trout Pond,
- Payne Lake, and
- Chain Lakes Reservoir.
If you decide to go ice-fishing, stay safe. If you’re planning to head out next spring, clean your reels because your chances have improved.
For those of you who are curious about what we said to the media, you can download the press release below.