December 9, 2019

2019 Lake Stocking Program: Year in Review

For delivery of the 2019 provincial recreational stocking program, the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC’s hatcheries raised 4.97 million trout, char and kokanee – from juvenile fry to catchable-sized fish – and released these fish into 622 lakes around our province.

Fish releases occur during the spring and fall months each year. On March 5, our 2019 stocking program kicked off on Vancouver Island with the release of catchable-sized rainbow trout into Prospect and Elk lakes near Victoria. The first Lower Mainland lakes to be stocked that spring were Green Timbers and Como lakes, while Shawnigan (near Kelowna) was the first Interior lake stocked. Coming full circle, our stocking season wrapped up on November 22 with the release of 2,202 catchable-sized rainbow trout into Shawnigan Lake.

This year, the Cariboo received the most fish, with 2,050,462 fish stocked into 85 lakes in the region. 171 lakes were stocked within the Thompson-Nicola, reflecting that region’s large number of high-quality, accessible fisheries. In terms of biomass, Vancouver Island received the most kilograms of fish. This region receives many catchable-sized fish which are stocked at a larger size (220 grams on average). The percentage break-down per region for these stocking summaries are available below:

In addition to releasing fish in the spring and fall, our fish culturists were busy collecting rainbow trout and westslope cutthroat eggs and milt from four Interior lakes in the spring, and kokanee and eastern brook trout eggs and milt in the fall.

2019 stocking summaries for each region of the province are listed below. If you’re interested in learning more about the species and strains of fish we stock, check out the Stocked Strains section of our website. And use the Fish Stocking Report tool for more information about a region or lake, including all historical records.
Vancouver Island (Region 1)
9,347 coastal cutthroat and 227,029 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 49.
Summary of Region 1 stocking events

Lower Mainland (Region 2)
4,070 coastal cutthroat and 86,975 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 40.
Summary of Region 2 stocking events

Thompson-Nicola (Region 3)
154,800 brook trout; 138,850 kokanee; and 908,020 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 171.
Summary of Region 3 stocking events

Kootenay-Boundary (Region 4)
47,105 westslope cutthroat; 15,750 eastern brook trout; 152,324 kokanee; 234,357 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 100.
Summary of Region 4 stocking events, East Kootenay and West Kootenay

Cariboo (Region 5)
69,500 brook trout; 756,398 kokanee; and 1,224,564 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 85 lakes.
Summary of Region 5 stocking events

Skeena (Region 6)
21,000 brook trout; 11,200 kokanee; 54,500 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 19.
Summary of Region 6 stocking events

Omineca (Region 7a)
57,000 brook trout; 15,400 kokanee; and 234,200 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 47.
Summary of Region 7a stocking events

Peace (Region 7b)
12,000 brook trout and 35,195 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 16.
Summary of Region 7b stocking events

Okanagan (Region 8)
28,400 brook trout; 13,000 kokanee; 465,720 rainbow trout. Lakes stocked: 95.
Summary of Region 8 stocking events
The Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC thanks the 360,000 anglers who purchased a freshwater fishing licence so far this year. Your fees help fund the stocking program.

Author: Staff, Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC