Commission Update Daily Trout Limit
Set at Five Beginning in 2000
Pennsylvania's regular season daily creel limit for trout will be set at five beginning in the
year 2000. The Fish and Boat Commission adopted the new limit at its summer quarterly meeting July 18.
The five fish creel limit replaces the current daily limit of eight, which has been in place on
Pennsylvania waters since 1952. The regulation change applies to inland waters and only during the regular season--the
first Saturday after April 11 through midnight Labor Day. The daily limit will remain at three during the extended
season, which runs from midnight Labor Day through the end of February on most stocked trout waters. The limit change
also does not apply to waters managed under special regulations, the Conowingo Reservoir, the Delaware River or Lake
Erie and its tributaries.
2000 Seasons, Sizes and Creel Limits poster
The Commission sought extensive public comment on the reduction, which included public hearings,
letters, e-mail and a scientifically valid marketing survey. There was strong public support for the new creel limit,
with some 60 percent advocating a reduction. That public support was the crucial factor for Commissioners in considering
the proposal because the measure is based on social and policy perceptions instead of a distinct fisheries management
need. The new limit will not result in dramatic effects on either stocked or wild trout populations. Nor will a
reduction guarantee that the catch rate will be spread among more anglers; on-the-stream creel surveys in Pennsylvania
have shown that 90 percent of anglers already creel five or fewer trout.
However, adoption of the new regulation does reflect the modern emphasis on fishing primarily for
recreational purposes, instead of fishing solely for consumption. The action also brings trout limits more in line with
those established for other popular game fish such as bass (six fish daily limit) and walleyes (six fish daily limit.)
In other action, the Commission:
- approved updates of the list of endangered, threatened and candidate fish species.
- authorized a conditional transfer of ownership of its Ingham Springs property to Solebury
Township, Bucks County.
- authorized the Executive Director to pursue corporate sponsorships for the entrance/lobby area
of the Commission headquarters currently under construction.
- approved a grant or other support for the Kettle Creek Watershed Association in the amount of
$5,000 for fiscal year 99-00 for a habitat improvement or related project that has direct and substantial benefits
for the portion of Kettle Creek that flows through Commission property.
- authorized the acquisition of a permanent property right for a utility crossing at its
Linesville Fish Culture Station, Crawford County.
- authorized a 25-year lease of 13 acres of property at Harris Pond to Ross Township, Luzerne
- authorized an acquisition at Pine Breeze Island in Pine Creek, Lycoming County, in the event
such is not pursued and acquired by DCNR or the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
- approved the publication of a notice of proposed rulemaking to delete the provisions regarding
harvest of smelt in Kinzua (Allegheny) Reservoir and its tributaries, Warren and McKean counties, effective January
1, 2000, to facilitate construction work.
- approved the closure of Tamarack Lake, Crawford County, to fishing until June 16, 2001.
- authorized closing Coyler Lake, Centre County, to fishing from September 15, 1999, until June
17, 2000, to allow for a liming project to improve lake fertility.
- extended by 0.1 miles the existing 1.0-mile section of Little Pine Creek, Lycoming County,
currently managed under the Delayed-Harvest, Artificial-Lures-Only program, effective January 1, 2000.
- designated Upper Woods Pond, Wayne County, and Lake Took-a-While, Luzerne County, as Select
Trout Stocked Lake Program waters, effective January 1, 2000.
- removed Opossum Creek Lake from the Conservation Lakes Program and added it to the Big Bass
Special Regulations Program, effective January 1, 2000.
- added Lower Twin Lake, Westmoreland County, to the Big Bass Special Regulations Program,
effective January 1, 2000.
- added Lower Woods Pond, Wayne County, to the Big Bass Special Regulations Program, effective
January 1, 2000.
- applied the Panfish Enhancement Special Regulations for crappies at both Upper Twin Lake and
Lower Twin Lake, Westmoreland County, effective January 1, 2000. The minimum size limit will be 9 inches, and a
daily limit of 20 will apply.
- applied the Panfish Enhancement Special Regulations to sunfish and yellow perch at both Upper
Promised Land Lake and Lower Promised Land Lake, Pike County, effective January 1, 2000. A 7-inch minimum size limit
will apply to sunfish (bluegills, pumpkinseeds, and redear sunfish), and a 9-inch minimum size limit will apply to
yellow perch. A combined creel limit of 20 will apply to the target species.
- designated a 2,000-foot section of Powers Run passing through St. Marys Sportsmen's Club
property as an exclusive-use area for children.
- designated a 450-foot section of Deep Creek, beginning at the upstream side of Schuylkill County
Bridge #111, along Hubley Township Road 450, and extending downstream for 450 feet, as an exclusive-use area for
both children and special populations.
- placed a temporary moratorium on the designation of additional exclusive-use areas pending a
staff review of the program.
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September/October 1999 Table of Contents
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