Friday, January 28, 2022

Rainbeaux trout are back!

Each winter, nearly two dozen ponds across Louisiana are stocked with rainbow trout. Some of the stockings are by local agencies. For example, ponds in East Baton Rouge Parish are stocked by Baton Rouge Recreation (BREC) and in Ascension Parish by the AP Police Jury. Most other ponds are stocked by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries under their "Get Out and Fish" community fishing program.

Earlier this month, EBR and Ascension parishes conducted their stockings. Yesterday, LDWF stocked the following public ponds: Parc Natchitoches, Purple Heart Memorial Park (Ragley), Fort Randolph (Pineville), William Polk Park (Vidalia), Kiroli Park (Monroe), Elmore Mayfield Park (Ruston), Grambling City Park, and Turners Pond (Minden).

Next week, LDWF will stock: I-10 Park (Jennings), Girard Park (Lafayette), Southside Regional Park (Youngsville), Bayou Country Sports Park (Houma), Joe Brown Park (New Orleans), Burbank Pond (Baton Rouge), Sidney Hutchinson (Walker), Zemurray Park (Hammond), Bogue Chitto State Park.

Even though trout are not regulated by LDWF, you do need to have a Louisiana fishing license.  All fish must be caught on legal recreational tackle (rod and reel, fly tackle or cane pole).

The concept is to give the public good fishing at a time when native species like bass and bream are sluggish. These ponds have good bank fishing, which allows a segment of the population to enjoy good fishing. Most of the stocked fish are between 10 and 12 inches, but each pond will have several up to 16 inches to give anglers the opportunity for a bigger fish.

For fly anglers, all that is needed is a 5-weight outfit. However, for those with an ultralight outfit (3-weight or lower), the fun factor is amplified!

Regarding flies. The first couple of weeks the fish are opportunistic. An olive or black woolybugger will work best, along with a few nymphs such as Prince Nymph, Copper Johns, Hares Ears, and San Juan Worms. Once the trout have acclimated to their environment, dry flies work very well late in the day.