Monday, October 18, 2021

Fish and Game seeks info regarding illegal harvest of bull trout in North Idaho

by .J. ROSS Contributing Writer
| August 31, 2021 1:00 AM

Idaho Fish and Game are seeking information regarding illegal harvest of bull trout on the Pack River in the Lake Pend Oreille basin this summer. Fish and Game conservation officers are seeking any information the public may have that might lead to the identification of the people involved.

Bull trout were listed as “threatened” under the endangered species act in 1998. Lake Pend Oreille is home to a healthy population of these unique fish due to its clean, cold water and abundance of suitable spawning tributaries, including the Pack River.

Harvest of bull trout in Idaho is illegal; only catch-and-release is allowed. View the 2019-2021 Idaho Fishing Seasons and Rules for more information.

Bull Trout can be identified by characteristics such as a squared tail fin, pink spotting along their sides, and a dorsal fin lacking any markings. Learn more on bull trout identification.

Bull trout grow big and fight hard, making them a highly-sought-after quarry by many anglers. Illegal harvest of bull trout, as with any poaching case, directly impacts fishing opportunities for law-abiding sportsmen.

Information leading to charges being filed would be eligible for a reward from the Citizens Against Poaching program.

Please contact the Citizens Against Poaching hotline 1-800-632-5999 and declare that you may have information regarding a bull trout poaching case on the Pack River.

T.J. Ross is senior fisheries research biologist with the Idaho Department of Fish & Game.