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Private Waters Owners May Receive Fish

LINCOLN, Neb. – Landowners and associations can enhance fishing opportunities in Nebraska by having their private waters stocked with fish. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission must receive stocking applications by Aug. 1.

To receive fish, the body of water must meet the following requirements:

— It must be at least one-half surface acre in size.

— At least 25 percent of the body must be at least 10 feet deep.

— No other fish can be present in the body at the time of stocking.

— It must have at least 12 inches of water clarity.

— It must have fencing available if necessary to exclude livestock.

The fish available for stocking typically are largemouth bass and bluegill fingerlings and will be delivered on a split-stocking basis. Bluegill will be stocked in September the first year at a density of 500 fingerlings per surface acre of water. Largemouth bass will be stocked the following July at a density of 100 fingerlings per surface acre of water.

If channel catfish are desired, owners must purchase them from a licensed private aquaculturist. When stocked in combination with bass and bluegill, Game and Parks recommends the catfish be 2- to 3-inch fingerlings stocked in the second year at a density of 50-150 fish per surface acre of water.

Cold-water bodies capable of supporting trout year-round may be considered for stocking of 5-inch rainbow trout. Pond owners who allow reasonable public access could also receive maintenance trout stockings.

Landowners and associations still can regulate angler access if they receive fish. Game and Parks urges owners to grant access to anglers asking permission to fish. Anglers cannot be charged a fee to fish. A valid Nebraska fishing permit is required of every person 16 years or older who fishes bodies stocked by Game and Parks. All state fishing regulations apply.

To download an application, visit OutdoorNebraska.org and click on Fishing, Services, Special Fishing Forms and Documents, and Application for Fish. The mailing address is on the application.

Contact Jeff Blaser, Game and Parks’ private waters specialist, at 402-471-5435 or jeff.blaser@nebraska.gov for more information.

About Jerry Kane

Jerry Kane is the news manager with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. He can be contacted at jerry.kane@nebraska.gov or 402-471-5008.

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