Anglers Asked to Adjust Practices Due to Heat
Due to high air temperatures and drought conditions causing streams and rivers to flow with less water and at warmer water temperatures, anglers are asked to modify their fishing practices.
Warmer water temperatures can affect fish survival, especially trout, who experience increased mortality at prolonged exposure to water temperatures greater than 75 degrees Fahrenheit; brief exposure to temperatures over 80 degrees can be lethal.
Because of this, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department asks all anglers practicing catch and release to consider the following:
- Fish for trout early in the morning while the water temperature is cooler.
- Carry a pocket thermometer to monitor the water temperature.
- If the water temperature is at or above 65 degrees, consider keeping what you catch within the regulations. If the temperature is 70 degrees or higher, do not attempt to catch and release trout.
- As water temperature increases, using the proper techniques to catch and release a trout becomes increasingly more important to help ensure the fish has a chance to survive
- Land fish as rapidly as possible to reduce exhaustion stress.
- Keep the fish in the water as much as possible.
- Do not squeeze the fish or place fingers in the gills.
- Remove the hook gently. If hooked deeply, cut the leader.
- Flies and lures are recommended whenever many trout are being caught and released.
- Barbless hooks allow easier hook removal.
- If a fish is exhausted and cannot hold itself upright, and if regulations allow, consider having it for dinner because the fish has a poor chance of surviving.