MOUNTAIN HOME — Idaho Power officials are scheduled to release about 50,000 pan-sized rainbow trout at two popular fishing spots along the C.J. Strike Reservoir south of Mountain Home this week.
The company alternated the releases between the Cottonwood and Jack’s Creek accesses April 30 through May 2.
The reservoir covers roughly 7,500 acres in Elmore and Owyhee counties. It is a popular fishing and camping spot. Idaho Power owns and maintains four campgrounds and a day-use park at the reservoir.
“Idaho Power’s federal licenses to operate its hydroelectric facilities on the Snake River require the company to preserve and enhance recreational opportunities. As part of that effort, the company stocks various locations along the Middle Snake each year,” Idaho Power spokesman Brad Bowlin explained in a news release.
The spring release focuses on C.J. Strike Reservoir -- while fish released in the fall go to several locations along the Middle Snake. The company also releases trout at American Falls Reservoir in the fall.
“Our trout-stocking program is one way Idaho Power balances its operations with environmental stewardship,” Idaho Power biologist Ben Reingold said.
These fish are raised at a hatchery in the Hagerman Valley and are about ten inches long when released. Those that aren’t caught right away can grow several inches per year.
Some trout released previously have metal jaw tags. “Anglers are asked to report any tagged fish they catch by recording the tag number, date, the reward value (if any) and the approximate location where the fish was caught. They can call 1-800-388-6011 toll-free and provide information that includes their name, mailing address, telephone number and whether the fish was kept or released,” Bowlin stated.
Anglers who report tagged fish through the toll-free number are entered in a drawing for $1,000. Visit idahopower.com/fish for more information.
(photo courtesy Idaho Power)