Trout Get Hot Too: CPW Asks Trout Anglers to Mind Warm Weather
I love summer, but I am not a fan of this 90 degree weather. It turns out, trout aren't either.
According to a press release from Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW), water temperatures in Colorado are rising due to heat, drought, and low water levels.
Higher temperatures are stressful for trout, as the animals prefer to swim in 50-60 degree waters.
When water temperatures increase to over 70 degrees, the oxygen levels in the water decrease, which causes trout to stop feeding and makes the animals more vulnerable to diseases.
In order to avoid stressing out the trout even more, CPW is asking anglers to fish for trout early in the day and at higher altitudes, where the water is cooler.
If the water feels warm, or the fish seem lethargic, it is best to leave the trout alone.
"Anglers should monitor water temperatures and end their trout fishing adventures when water temperatures start to approach 70 degrees," said Matt Nicholl, CPW's Aquatic Section Manager, in the release. "If trout have difficulty recovering after being caught and are acting lethargic, it's a good decision to call it quits for the day."
CPW recommends that anglers bring a thermometer along when fishing in order to test water temperatures.
Officials also recommend using a heavy tippet and line, as well as barbless hooks, so that the fish can be unhooked as quickly as possible.
The longer a fish is on the hook, the higher its risk of disease and death is, especially when water temperatures are warm.
When unhooking the fish, CPW asks that anglers keep the animal submerged, and avoid taking photos with it out of the water.
So, there you have it: be cool, and help the trout keep cool.