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Where Wild Trout Thrive

Fishing Regulations Vermont Freshwater Fishing

Where Wild Trout Thrive

Vermont works to nurture cold, clean habitats

Vermont is fortunate to have a wealth of wild trout within its borders, and the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department is committed to protecting and improving these populations.

Wild trout are indicators of a healthy environment and need cold, clean water with complex and connected habitats to thrive. As a result, the department, along with various partners, has made habitat improvement, environmental review and population monitoring three of the primary focuses of its wild trout management program.

Specific efforts of the program include:

Environmental review

More than 1,200 staff days expended by fisheries staff in 2014 and 2015 alone on project review aimed at protecting aquatic habitat.

Wild trout monitoring

Long-term monitoring of wild trout populations by fisheries biologists to evaluate population health and determine appropriate management strategies, such as fishing regulations and habitat enhancements.

Aquatic habitat enhancement

Strategic addition of downed trees, brush and boulders to streams to improve trout habitat, as well as the completion of riparian planting projects along stream banks to provide shade and keep water temperatures cool.

Aquatic organism passage

Collaborative work with the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation and Vermont Agency of Transportation to improve aquatic organism passage at dams and roadside culverts.

Newly designed culverts provide flood resiliency and allow fish to move freely throughout the stream.

Planting trees and allowing vegetation to grow along shorelines benefits surrounding ecosystems in multiple ways.

Department staff work with partners to enhance fish habitat in Northeast Kingdom streams.