If you are unable to keep a fish over 14'' and below a size 20'' or 21'' that means that all of those fish are capable of swimming away after being caught to grow until they reach 22". Bigger fish on the Clinch would (I'm stealing this from some other smart guy) make this a world class fishery thanks Rocky! As far as impact I wouldn't be able to really put my two cent's in...I have fished the S Holston now a total of four times...they have a "Trophy Section" of water and a slot limit to follow. Being as I'm strictly C&R I wouldn't know the specifics...HUGH CHIME IN....And seeing as I don't know when this rule went into effect on the S Holston I really can't comment. But, I do know this the S. Holston definately fishes better. That tailwater see's more fisherman than the Clinch ever will any day of the week and yet it still produces better fish. Bigger fish will produce better spawns...So this in itself would help TWRA in it's stocking....All of this though will come down to enforcement of!! This will only prevent the honest fisherman from taking an illegal size fish home with him or her! All of those fish realesed between 14 and 20 inches will be left to grow so that means that there will be alot more fish between 14 and 20 inch fish left for me and you to catch and be released for some other guy or gal to snag after it's grown a little and gotten a little smarter!
I'm interested in someone giving the catch rate/size ratio before and after on the S. Holston....I don't even keep up with the other fisheries, seeing as I'm strictly C&R I don't ever even look at who has a slot limit, just spawning!
I did some research and found something of interest straight from TWRA. http://www.state.tn.us/twra/fish/Str...ston%202.0.pdf
This link is in reference to TWRA's S. Holston current trout management plan in reference to slot limits and spawn closures...If you don't want to read it, it basically says that they are planning on re-acessing in 2008 to check the impact of the change ie; slot limits enforced since March of 2000 and spawn area's enforced since March of 99'. Interesting read though...It metions a decline in fishing pressure and what might have effected it. Watuaga? I believe that's probably a good answer. Non the less I'll be interested in hearing the results! All and all, for now there not sure if it has any effect on size of fish but it has apparently developed an overwhelming "WILD" brown trout population. Which was evident in seeing a predominant amount of brown trout this weekend there! It's an amazing fishery. The wier laberinth is of more interest to me than anything...I would love to see what this would do to a fishery like the Clinch...I would also like to see the before/after data of the implementation of that since 1991 on the S fork of the Holston. I'm betting it had a major impact!