64% of Tennessee stocked trout including all brown to go away
We could be with out 64% of the trout stocked in our state. Yes you read that correctly, 64%. There would be no brown trout at all to stock. If you like to trout fish you should be concerned. Please continue reading.
Proposed federal budgets would eliminate funding for much of what these hatcheries provide to Tennesseans. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has not shared any plans with the State that would demonstrate a willingness to continue support of these facilities under new budgets constraints. It seems that they are willing to let them shut down, despite mitigation responsibilities to Tennessee.
The USFWS is choosing to rely on reimbursements from the US Army Corps of Engineers and TVA for mitigation. These are the appropriate mitigating agencies, but they are not fully funding their mitigation responsibilities. The USACE has offered to pay about 80% of their share, but TVA has not made such an agreement. Without a reimbursement from TVA the Dale Hollow National Fish Hatchery would have to reduce its production by 60%. That would mean no trout would be raised for TVA tailwaters such as the Clinch, the South Holston,Watauga, Hiwassee, Elk, etc.
The bottom line is that if these facilities are shut down, then recreational opportunities and the revenues they generated throughout the state will be severely reduced.
Please contact your US representatives and the Department of the Interior to let them know what you think of this action. Request that the USFWS support recreational fisheries, and request that the federal budget continue to fund mitigation hatcheries until the USACE and TVA fully reimburse Tennesseans for their mitigation responsibilities.
Additional information about these facilities.....
Dale Hollow National Fish Hatchery is operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It primarily produces trout for distribution into tailwater and reservoir trout fisheries in Tennessee. These stockings are regarded as mitigation responsibilities for impoundments managed by US Army Corps of Engineers and the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Dale Hollow NFH stocks trout at our most valuable trout fisheries such as Caney Fork, Hiwassee, Clinch, South Holston and Watauga rivers. Several large lakes such as Dale Hollow, South Holston, and Watauga reservoirs rely on Dale Hollow NFH production. These large, popular fisheries require 40- 100 thousand trout a year to maintain quality fisheries.
Dale Hollow NFH also supplies approximately 150,000 trout to TWRA’s Tellico Trout Hatchery. These trout are stocked into Tellico River and Citico Creek in the Cherokee National Forest throughout the year.
In 2010 Dale Hollow NFH stocked 1.3 million trout, or 289,000 pounds of trout, into Tennessee waters. That is 64 % of all trout stocked in Tennessee, and 51 % by weight.
Dale Hollow NHF is the sole source for brown trout and lake trout in Tennessee. TWRA hatcheries do not have the required water quality or space to handle these species.
The operational budget of Dale Hollow NFH is $797,000. Dale Hollow NFH is approximately three times the size of TWRA’s largest trout hatchery, which is Buffalo Springs Trout Hatchery.
The total economic output of DHNFH was estimated to be $75.1 million in 2010. That is $94 of benefit per dollar spent on the facility.
As part of their partnership with TWRA, Dale Hollow NFH also raises trout for TWRA at a low rate of $100,000 for 100,000 pounds of trout. This is a very low cost and a huge benefit to TWRA’s trout program. These trout can be stock anywhere in Tennessee and many of them are used for our winter trout program in middle Tennessee.
Erwin National Fish Hatchery plays a less visible but critical role in trout production in Tennessee and nationally. The loss of Erwin NHF would jeopardize production at Dale Hollow NFH, and add costs for our TWRA hatcheries. Erwin NFH raises trout to adult stage and harvests eggs for distribution throughout the National Fish Hatchery System, and provides eggs to two of our state hatcheries at no cost to the State.
trout stocking decline because of federal budget
Is everyone as sick as me of hearing how our government cannot seem to manage OUR money?
And our dear president wants to raise taxes on the wealthy. So what happens when we are all broke because of Washington's ineptness??
My congressman lives about a half mile from me, used to coach Little League baseball against his team (and always won). Hope he doesn't remember that because I am gonna pay him a visit to express my displeasure about reducing or closing hatcheries.
Maybe I should give up fly fishing and start coaching again?
TWRA needs to implement catch and release in all trout water or reduce creel limits by 64%
NOW NOW NOW
So here we go....
When TVA built these dams a "taking" occurred in that natural river habitat was lost along with the unique fishery it provided. This was a loss to the people in terms of recreation, both fishing, canoeing and other "values".
TVA has previously responded to this loss by trying to augment or mitigate these losses in some locations by trying to enhance what is left of the riverine habitat... an example would be the weirs and grates on the SOHO or Oxygen injection to raise O2 levels below Cherokee.
It is entirely reasonable that the State of TN and TWRA INSIST that this loss of fish habitat, spawning habitat etc. be mitigated with funds to restore, or enhance or sustain a fishery through fish stocking.
Another facet to this situation is that Pittman Robertson funds are collect on the sale of fishing and hunting gear here in TN and this money could be used to sustain these hatcheries. In many States the entire hatchery system is funded with these Federal taxes paid by sportsmen.
I wonder now that we are headed toward "austerity measures" after the Anointed one spent a trillion bucks "stimulating" our economy how much of that money went to repair of fish hatcheries?
I would hope that National TU has the guts to stand up to the exalted one who they supported for president in the last election?
Don't blame this on conservatives.... blame it on those who have a social agenda that doesn't care about those who hunt, fish and enjoy the outdoors... This is clearly a situation where city people out vote country people.. some want to fish and others want to get it in the store with an EBT card.
There is a positive, and that is the majority of our fish do not come from federal hatcheries.
In all honesty the feds should not be in the business of raising fish. I do not recall reading in the constitution that the govt should provide ample fish for the country. Maybe I missed that section.
Personally I think far too many americans rely on the govt for services, money, or something else to make their lives better. What happened to the americans who wanted govt to stay out of their lives and do only the things which they should do (military etc). If we don't get this insane spending under control it will destroy this nation, and is already to some degree.
TWRA which is funded by us, should be the ones raising fish for stocking purposes and the people who utilize the waters where these fish are stocked should use self control and understand that it isn't necessarily a grocery store.
If you want more fish stocked, create a foundation to raise money to fund hatcheries in this state on the state level. Let the feds fold up. ASk yourself why do we need a US fish and wildlife service? Why does the federal govt need to stock fish?
I think Waterwolf has a point. I don't know why we need Fed help on the stocking. I purchase a sportsman's license every year and the $136 should be plenty to cover my wildlife activity. I have not kept a trout in 2 1/2 years and I would hazard to guess that the mortality rate of a trout caught with a fly rod is less than 1 fatality in 250 fish caught (assume reasonable catch release practice). So I doubt I have killed more than 5 fish in 2 years. I enjoy fishing and want the next guy to have a shot at the same experience tomorrow, next week, or next year (luck will out). We need to conserve our resource not burn through our "seed corn".
Thanks for your perspective. I tend to agree with you and see the question about what is the role of govt being asked many more times before the federal spending gets controlled.
state funding of hatcheries
Folks, the good state of Tennessee is broke too, if you can believe our new governor. Without money to build new or take over existing hatcheries, there isn't going to be any move in the state legislature to do this. Even if they could come up with funds from somewhere you can darn well bet it won't be spent on fish!
So we are back to losing 64% of stockers.
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