We know many people are interested in the proposed stocking of Tiger Trout into a few select stocked waters in Alberta. In email received from Fisheries:
“Tiger Trout Task Team Progress Report – June/July 2015
Team Objectives and Timeline
- Develop a list of lakes to present to SFBT at June meeting
- Confirmation of selected water bodies summer 2015
- Confirm environmental suitability and social acceptance over summer, 2015
- Final selection of water bodies September 2015
- Stocking of TGTR September – October 2015, Spring 2016
- Assessment throughout 2016 and 2017
- Reassessment of TGTR stocking program end of 2017
May 14, 2015 – Meeting
The Tiger Trout Task Team; a sub-committee of the Alberta Senior Fisheries Biologist Team, met by teleconference on May 14, 2014 to discuss stocking options for Tiger trout which has been approved as a new species available for stocking in provincial waters. Initial discussions centered around what the stocking objectives for tiger trout in Alberta should be. Two options were considered: the Manitoba option where Tiger trout are stocked in specific waters to create destination fisheries for the species; and the Saskatchewan model where Tiger trout are stocked to enhance existing trout fisheries as justified by annual production numbers, angler demand and lake characteristics. There was agreement amongst the task team that the initial objective for the stocking of Tiger trout in Alberta should be:
To create destination Tiger Trout fisheries similar to the Manitoba model with the goal of developing both mono-culture tiger trout and mixed trout fisheries. Selection criteria for these waters to include:
- Must be able to overwinter fish either naturally or through aeration; and
- Must be isolated with no outlet or inlet; and
- Must be able to monitor through trail cameras and/or volunteer participation and/or dedicated area/hatchery participation; and
- For mono-culture fisheries, waters with known or perceived low catch rates will be priority, stocking of existing trout species will be replaced with Tiger Trout, performance can be compared to existing lake information or provincial averages.
- Mixed fisheries with existing information on trout growth, condition and survival are desirable.
- Must be physically and socially capable of accepting an increase or decrease in angling pressure; and
- On successful fisheries angler pressure could exceed 400 angler hours per hectare;
- If unsuccessful areas could see a decrease in angler pressure and an increase in angler complaints.
- There should be other angling opportunities nearby.
- Existing Quality Stocked Fishery objective desirable; if not present will need to consult.
- Should have an adequate prey species forage base that does not include species at risk in Alberta; and
- Water should be scattered throughout the province. Total surface area (200 – 400 hectares) should be large enough to accommodate an annual stocking of 15-20 thousand Tiger trout at a stocking rate of 50-100 fish per hectare.
- Task team members will review existing stocked waters; with area biologists, to identify potential waters for stocking with Tiger trout. Hatchery will provide them with their initial stocked water assessment for consideration.
- Potential list with advantages/disadvantages will be reviewed by task team at the next conference call on June 05, 2015 with the objective of selecting 3 monoculture waters and 3 mixed species waters along with 2 alternative waters for each category for recommendation to the SFBT at the June meeting.
- At the June 5th conference call task team members are to provide a list of questions they would like answered during the initial tiger trout assessment. Questions should focus on whether or not tiger trout can:
- Provide a better fishery (catch rate, angler effort; ecological interaction); or
- Provide a better fish (growth, survival).
- Based on questions and locations a survey model will be developed for presentation to the SFBT.
- Confirmation of selected waters suitability summer 2015.
- Consultation to change target species and/or Fisheries Management Objective should occur over summer.
- Final selection of waters to be stocked with Tiger Trout to occur in September.
- Stocking of Tiger trout September-October, 2015 and spring 2016.
- Based on water suitability, existing consultation, water quality and survey potential; opportunities may exist to stock Tiger trout in the spring/summer of 2015.
- Assessment of stocking 2016 and 2017.
- Reassessment of tiger trout stocking program end of 2017.
June 05, 2015 – Meeting
Task team members met to discuss lakes identified by the area biologists as potential candidates for destination Tiger Trout fisheries. Information gaps and whether or not the fishery should be considered a mono culture Tiger Trout fishery or was better suited to mixed trout fishery with tiger trout as the focal species. Lakes were categorized into:
- Tier 1 – meets or exceeds most selection criteria
- Muir Lake – Stoney Plain, PP2, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Beaver Lake – Sundre, ES2, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Ironside Lake – RMH, ES2, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Tier 2 – Meets majority of selection criteria, confirmation required for 1 – 2 parameters
- Black Nugget Mine Pit – Tofield, PP2, Mono-culture
- Dillberry Lake – Lloydminster, PP2, Mono-culture
- East Twin Lake – Manning, NB3, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Henningers Reservoir – Lethbridge, PP1, Mono-culture
- Kerbe’s Pond – Red Deer, PP2, Mono-culture
- Captain Eyre Lake – Provost, PP2, Mono-culture or Mixed Trout Fishery
- Blood Indian Reservoir – Hanna, PP2, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Tier 3 – Meets some of the selection criteria; confirmation required on 2+ parameters; further investigation and/or discussion needed
- Tyrrell Lake – Lethbridge, PP1, Mono-culture
- Keenex Coulee Reservoir – Lethbridge, PP1, Mono-culture
- Foremost Pond – Lethbridge, PP1, Mono-culture
- Hasse Lake – Stoney Plain, PP2, Mono-culture
- Running Lake – Worsley, NB3, Mono-culture
- Ole’s Lake – Fairview, NB3, Mono-culture
- Chain Lakes – Athabasca, NB2, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Peanut Lake – Barrhead, NB2, Mixed Trout Fishery
- Dolberg Lake – Barrhead, NB2, Mono-culture or Mixed Trout Fishery
June 16, 2015 – SFBT Meeting
These lakes were further discussed and prioritized at the Senior Fisheries Biologist Team meeting on June 16, 2015. Results of prioritization were:
|Priority||Lake||Number to Stock1||Stock Number Running Total|
|5||Black Nugget Mine Pit||2,100||6,800|
|9||East Twin Lake||1,000||16,700|
|103||Lower Chain Lake||4,300||21,000|
|12||Captain Eyre Lake||1,000||23,500|
|13||Keenex Coulee Reservoir||2,000||25,500|
|19||Blood Indian Reservoir||5,000||43,500|
|1 – Stocking rate based on Ontario rate for BNTR yearlings. 50-100 per ha.|
|2 – Need to assess survival before stocking, can receive up to 40,000 fish.|
|3 – Number of Tiger Trout to stock in 2015 attained.|