About 20,000 channel catfish have been stocked into 18 lakes and ponds throughout the state this week, the state Department of Energy and Environmental protection announced today.
This is the sixth year that DEEP has released catfish into state waters, and this year five new waterways received fish.
“Stocking catfish in urban areas will provide excellent family recreational opportunities close to home for many local residents,” DEEP Commissioner Daniel Esty said in a news release.
In eastern Connecticut, catfish were stocked in: Mohegan Park Pond in Norwich; Hopeville Pond in Griswold; Quinebaug Lake (Wauregan Reservoir) in Killingly; Lower Bolton Lake in Bolton; and Pattaconk Lake in Chester.
Mohegan Park Pond is one of the community fishing ponds that received 14- to 18-inch catfish weighing more than two pounds each. Hopeville Pond, Quinebaug Lake, Lower Bolton Lake and Pattaconk Lake all received 9- to 12-inch fish.
The catfish were obtained from commercial hatcheries in Arkansas, and this year about one third of the 14- to 18-inch fish were albinos that are white or peach colored, DEEP said in a news release.
“This DEEP program establishes channel catfish in lakes where we know there is sufficient forage to support a population of large game fish,” said Bill Hyatt, chief of DEEP’s Bureau of National Resources. “DEEP believes that the combination of a popular game fish stocked into waters that are selected based on scientific data is a winning combination. We’ve had great success using this approach to develop exciting fisheries for northern pike and walleye and now we’re looking forward to similar results with catfish.”
For fishing regulations and other information, visit: www.ct.gov/deep/anglersguide.