AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – The Texas Parks & Wildlife Department announced that it will stock thousands of rainbow trout in Neighborhood Fishin’ program lakes across the state starting the week of Thanksgiving, including in the Amarillo area, to kick off the holiday season.
“It doesn’t take a lot of sophisticated fishing equipment to reel in a rainbow trout. They can be caught using simple, light tackle or hand-tied flies on a fly rod,” said the TPWD, “However, anglers should keep an array of baits and lures nearby as well as ice to keep trout fresh. Rainbow trout are an attractive, tasty fish and anglers can easily find recipes online.”
The department noted that it will stock more than 343k rainbow trout in Texas water from Nov. 22 through March 1, 2024. The department also encouraged anglers to keep up to their daily bag limit of five trout, due to rainbow trout being unable to survive in most areas of Texas after the winter season.
As noted by the department, angler fishing in a community fishing lake or from a dock, pier or jetty within a Texas State Park may not use more than two poles. There is also a statewide bag limit of five trout with no minimum length limit, except in parts of the Guadalupe River.
Amarillo’s MediPark Lake will be one of the 18 locations in the TPWD’s Neighborhood Fishin’ program to receive a rainbow trout stock, noted the department. This comes after the lake was also stocked with catfish in April to facilitate fishing activities earlier in the year as part of the program, which works to provide opportunities for families and anglers to fish in major urban centers.
Rainbow trout will also be stocked in many local city and county park ponds, said the TPWD, and rainbow trout fishing is also popular along Texas rivers and streams during the season.
“TPWD stocks catchable-sized fish during winter months to create unique winter angling opportunities throughout Texas,” said Carl Kittel, TPWD Rainbow Trout Program Director. “Rainbow trout love cold water and can be caught on a variety of baits and lures (worms, commercially available pastes, corn, spinners, spoons, flies and more), and are great to take home and eat. Our winter rainbow trout program has been a favorite of anglers for over forty years.”
The department noted that anglers can enjoy complementary fishing without a license in Texas State Parks from a bank, dock, or pier. Further, while the state does not require a fishing license for youth under the age of 17, adults need a fishing license with a freshwater fishing endorsement.
More information on the 2023-2024 trout stocking schedule, license requirements and regulations can be found on the TPWD website.