With New Zealand Mud Snails gumming up the works at the Hot Creek Fish Hatchery, the Department of Fish and Game has had to scramble to keep up trout stocking obligations in the Eastern Sierra. Recognizing the economic impact of fishing on the summer tourist season, the Mono County Fisheries Commission has raised close to $50,000 to buy additional trout for local lakes and streams.
Kevin Peterson, the chair of the Mono Fisheries Commission, says that their job is to make the fishing as good as possible in Mono County.
What the Commission has done is raise money from private individuals, the Town of Mammoth, Mono County, and the Bridgeport Fish Enhancement Association to buy trout from Tim Alpers and turn them loose in 15 popular spots in Mono County adding to the fish that Fish and Game plants.
With the donated money, the Fisheries Commission hopes to plant 2,000 pounds of extra fish a week into September.
While he wont tell us when the fish will be planted, Mono Economic Development Director Dan Lyster explained that they are stocking the trout, 400 pounds at a time, into waters ranging from the Lakes Basin to Twin Lakes in Bridgeport, including some of the popular fishing at Virginia Lakes and Saddlebag Lake.
Lyster says that Fish and Game is trying their best to keep up with stocking in the Eastern Sierra, but he hears from resort owners and fishing guides that its tough to catch trout this season.
Lyster says that the warm water temperatures might contribute to the difficult fishing conditions. In the meantime the Mono Fisheries Commission plans to continue their efforts to fill Mono County waters with hungry trout.
If you are interested in donating to the cause, give Dan Lyster a call at the Mono County Economic Development Department. That number is 924-1705.