Fishing opportunities will abound this spring when rainbow trout are stocked at 67 public lakes and ponds, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife. Beginning the week of March 12 at Adams Lake in Adams County, more than 81,000 of these cold-water fish will be stocked in 2021.
Rainbow trout are raised at Ohio’s state fish hatcheries and measure between 10-13 inches when they are released by the Division of Wildlife. Rainbow trout releases will take place across Ohio from early March until May as long as areas are ice-free and accessible to anglers. A complete list of dates is available at wildohio.gov.
All fish will be stocked during the week listed for each location and will be available by the Friday of that week. Some locations feature a special event on the day of the scheduled release, including youth-only fishing. Information about the trout releases, including any updates to the schedule because of weather, stocking locations, and event information, is available at wildohio.gov or by calling 1-800-WILDLIFE (945-3543).
By stocking these water areas throughout the state, anglers of all ages have the opportunity to get out and enjoy quality spring rainbow trout fishing in a family-friendly environment. The daily catch limit for inland lakes is five trout per angler with no minimum size limit.
Anglers age 16 and older are required to have an Ohio fishing license to fish in state public waters. The 2021-22 fishing license is available now, and an annual license is valid for one year after it is purchased. An annual resident fishing license costs $25. A one-day fishing license costs $14 and may also be redeemed for credit toward the purchase of an annual fishing license.
Sales of fishing licenses along with the federal Sport Fish Restoration program support operation of Division of Wildlife fish hatcheries. The Sport Fish Restoration program is a partnership between federal and state government, the fishing industry, anglers, and boaters. When anglers purchase rods, reels, fishing tackle, fish finders, and motorboat fuel, they pay an excise tax. The federal government collects these taxes, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service administers and disburses these funds to state fish and wildlife agencies. These funds are used to acquire habitat, produce and stock fish, conduct research and assessment surveys, provide aquatic education, and secure fishing access.