Most of the trout populations in lakes and rivers throughout the country are maintained by stocking the trout. This means that either the Department of Fish and Game or the property owner adds trout to the lake or river to ensure a lively population.
While this increases the odds of their being fish in the lake or river, it sometimes causes the fish to behave slightly different than wild trout would. We have gathered some tips to ensure that you have the best odds when at a stocked lake and fishing for trout.
- Change baits frequently. This is the only way you will be able to determine what is working best. trout are picky eaters and may not be attracted to the same bait/lure set up as they were the day before.
- Use PowerBait. One of the best methods for fishing for farm raised trouts is possibly also the most simple… Use PowerBait. There are a variety of colors and scents so mix it up and try to determine what the fish are targeting that day. Here are some great Tips for fishing for trout with PowerBait
- Use small hooks. Just because a fish was raised in a farm does not change the fact that trout have keen eye sight and are unlikely to target any hooks larger than size #8. i have found the majority of stocked trout will be smaller and more attracted to treble hooks size #16 to #18.
- Fish around structures or aquatic plant life. Farm fish are rarely given the opportunity to graze in shallow waters, and will frequently graze once they are placed into a lake or river.
- Keep your lines tight. Farm fish typically are fed a type of dough ball or pellet, this results in the trout often not striking the bait as hard as it’s wild counterpart. Tight lines will ensure that you feel even the slightest of bites.
- Rub your hands with grass. Farm trout, like all trout, have a very strong sense of smell and one of the biggest trout deterrents can be “human smells”, odors that would just be completely unnatural to a fish such as gasoline or smoking. To ensure that you do not have any of these unnatural smells on your hands a simple solution is to rub your hands with grass, reeds, or a small amount of wet dirt.
A lot of these tips may seem simple or obvious but are also sure to increase the odds of you catching more trout when ever you are fishing a stocked lake or river. Most lakes and rivers that have stocked populations of trout likely also have at least a few large trout.
To target these larger trout you will want to utilize lures or larger live bait, and will be fishing as though your target is a wild trout rather than a stocked one. Outside of a trout tournament few large trout are stocked, and there for it is safe to assume the majority of the large trout that exist in stocked lakes or rivers have grown to their size within the lake and are essentially wild.