CATAWBA ISLAND, Ohio - ODNR, US Fish and Wildlife Service partner to bring lake trout back to Lake Erie.
Lake Erie is all about comeback stories and this is no different. Already a billion dollar sport fishery, Ohio's Great Lake is a World-class destination for anglers.
This week, the Ohio Division of Wildlife, through a partnership with the Allegheny National Fish Hatchery in Warren, PA, stocked lake trout, a native fish to Lake Erie, in two Ohio locations.
The 120,000 surplus fish are the first stocking of the salmonid in at least 30 years. Lake Erie once had enough lake trout to support a commercial fishery.
That was until pollution and devastation by the invasive sea lamprey wiped them out. Lampreys are in check and fisheries' biologists are hopeful the top-line predator will feast on some of the recent invasive fish species, like white perch.
WKYC Photojournalist Carl Bachtel joined fisheries biologists at Catawba Island and filed the following "Outdoors with Big Daddy" story.
The fish that were stocked this week should reach 14 to 15 inches in length in one year. In 3 to 4 years, the fish will be 25-28 inches and 6 to 8 pounds.