The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) has announced changes to the summer trout stocking schedule in backcountry waters in its Northern Region as a result of the candidacy of the Cascades Frog (Rana cascadae) for listing as an endangered or threatened species.
The Cascades Frog is found in a variety of habitats such as large lakes, ponds, wet meadows and streams at mid- to high-elevation ranges from the Klamath-Trinity region, along the Cascades Range axis in the vicinity of Mount Shasta, southward to the headwater tributaries of the Feather River.
In 2017, the California Fish and Game Commission voted to approve the candidacy of the Cascades Frog for potential listing under the California Endangered Species Act. During the candidacy review process, CDFW is obligated to protect the species from take, including protection from introduced fish in its native habitats, one of a number of threats to its survival in California.
Consequently, 41 backcountry locations primarily in Siskiyou and Trinity counties now known to support Cascades Frogs will not be stocked with trout in 2019. An additional 19 locations will not be stocked until CDFW can conduct a visual inspection to determine the presence of frogs. If visual inspection detects the presence of Cascades Frog, no stocking will occur.
CDFW will continue to stock trout in 146 locations throughout its Northern Region, which encompasses Del Norte, Humboldt, Lassen, Mendocino, Modoc, Shasta, Siskiyou, Tehama and Trinity counites.
The 41 locations removed from CDFW’s 2019 trout stocking allocations are typically remote, backcountry waters that were planted annually with fingerling rainbow trout by airplane, horses or mules. These waters historically were devoid of trout before humans introduced them.
Not stocking these waters should not negatively affect fishing opportunities in the near future because it takes a substantial amount of time for the fingerlings to grow to catchable size. Most of these waters contain self-sustaining populations of trout that will be available for anglers to catch this year just as in previous years.
The trout originally allocated to these 41 locations will be stocked into other waters to improve angling opportunities. Many of the trout will remain in CDFW’s hatcheries to grow to catchable size for later stocking into more popular and accessible waters.
Check CDFW’s Fish Planting Schedule for the latest waters stocked with trout. CDFW also offers an online, map-based Fishing Guide and mobile app to inform fishing decisions.
The list of Northern Region waters that will not be stocked in 2019 include:
Big Blue Lake
Crater Lake (Big), China Mountain
Cuddihy Lake #1
Cuddihy Lake #3
Granite Lake (Blue)
Lake of the Island
South Sugar Lake
Wright Lake (Lower)
Big Bear Lake
Little Boulder Lake