Anglers top up trout stocks in Lake McLaren

By Amy McGillivray

Fishing lines were kept out of the water at Lake McLaren last night instead a group of Tauranga fishermen turned up to release hundreds of trout.

About 200 brown and 500 rainbow trout were released into the lake and canal as part of an annual event.

Tauranga Anglers Club president Richard Tomson said the club members who turned up last night were a mixture of new and older members.

"It's not something you do every day but it's nice to have a hand in it," Mr Tomson said.

The fish were bred by Fish and Game at the Ngongotaha Trout Hatchery and were transported to Lake McLaren in a large tank on the back of a ute.

The trout were fished out of the tank and placed into buckets. Members of the club then carried the buckets to the water and released the fish.

Eastern region Fish and Game officer Mark Sherburn said about 100,000 trout were raised at the hatchery each year.

"About 80 per cent of those fish go into the Rotorua Lakes to ensure there are enough trout for anglers to catch."

He said the fish released were about a year old and measured about 18cm.

"Within a year in the lake they will grow to a good catchable size," he said.

While there is no size restriction on the trout caught in Lake McLaren most licensed anglers were not interested in keeping such small fish, he said.

Mr Tomson said Lake McLaren was a popular spot for Tauranga anglers to take their families.

"It's a great place just to get kids involved in fishing. It's a good place to go up there and have a picnic and teach your kids about the outdoors," he said. "We try to treat the fishing out there as a bit of a catch and release so that future generations can enjoy it. We just take the odd fish here and there."

- Bay of Plenty Times

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