|Just about every spring the Commission receives several inquiries
from anglers having caught a tagged trout. In most cases, these are NOT the result of any Commission
study or program. Clubs, commercial establishments and even individuals tag trout for a variety of reasons. Most involved
hatchery trout as part of a contest or promotional activity. Some are part of a short term special event where individuals
register for possible prizes from catching tagged fish. And, these are often limited to a particular body of water
and even a relatively short piece of stream at that. Others may be more regionalized. In Spring 2003, a major beverage
producer is stocking tagged fish (not necessarily trout) as part of a contest or promotion. Tagged fish were stocked
in numerous waters. Usually, those events involving prizes have sufficient information on the tag so that anglers
can make contact. But, in a few cases, tags have little if any info.
Tagging is sometimes undertaken by a sportsman's club involved in the Commission's Cooperative Nursery
Program. This program centers on the Commission providing fish, usually fingerling trout, to organizations for rearing
in their facilities and then stocked for fishing. The facilities and related activities have to be approved by the
Commission. Clubs may occasionally stock tagged trout as part of the process of evaluating the extent of their stocking,
movement, and so forth. The tags used are metal rings placed around the lower or upper jaw of the trout before stocking.
And, they will have info on the tag for contacting the Commission. These tags also will have the initials "CNP"
on them. If you catch a cooperative nursery program trout with a tag on it, please follow the instructions
on the tag for reporting it.
Tagging is legal providing the trout are from a commercial hatchery and not those taken from the wild and then tagged.
Just about the only time we permit fish from the wild to be tagged if such is part of a scientific study
undertaken by researchers authorized to do so by special permits from the Commission. I have heard of individual anglers
catching fish and them tagging them as a personal research effort. This activity is not legal under Commission