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Trout stocking starts in York County

John A. Pavoncello
York Dispatch

With Pennsylvania's second-biggest "opening day" looming at the end of March, the state Fish and Boat Commission has kicked off its annual trout stocking.

More than 2,400 brown and rainbow trout, bred and raised at the Huntsville hatchery, were stocked into Muddy and Bald Eagle creeks in southeastern York County on Tuesday. Dozens of volunteers scooped, dipped, netted and dumped trout ranging from 12 inches up to a few behemoth fish exceeding 20 inches. 

Volunteers from Muddy Creek Trout Unlimited, North Hopewell Fish and Game and the York Izaak Walton League walked miles of Muddy Creek, including the fly-fishing only catch-and-release area from Bruce downstream, pulling along floating 55-gallon containers holding more than 1,000 trout, which were placed in pools, runs and rapids.

Tuesday's stocking was the first of several planned between now and Saturday, March 30, the regional trout fishing opening day in York County. Not only does the Fish and Boat Commission stock, but local sporting organizations also contribute thousands of fish to local streams.

D.J. Beckey, a fish culturist with the PA Fish and Boat Commission scoops up nets full of brown and rainbow trout to be stocked by volunteers from local sportsman's groups in Muddy Creek in southeastern York County, Tuesday, March 5, 2019. The stocking was the first of several that will happen before trout season opens on March 30.
John A. Pavoncello photo

According to the commission website, more than 4 million brook, brown and rainbow trout will be stocked in at least 800 streams and lakes this year. 

Pennsylvania anglers are required to have a valid fishing license and trout-salmon permit. Fishing licenses can be obtained through local retailers or online at the Fish and Boat Commission website. 

The tail of an extremely large golden rainbow trout sticks out of a net as its loaded into a float stocking container on Bald Eagle Creek, Tuesday, March 5, 2019.  Volunteers from local sportsman's groups helped the Fish Commission with the stocking. John A. Pavoncello photo

Trout season opens at 8 a.m. March 30 for the 18 southeastern counties, including York, and statewide on April 13.