Trout Stocking Schedule in US & Canada: The ULTIMATE Guide


Trout stocking schedules are individually linked to each state and local wildlife branch and can change often. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t understand when states are stocking trout and the best months to plan trout fishing.

Trout stocking schedules vary greatly across the US and Canada, but spring and fall are typically the most common seasons for stocking. Northern states and Canadian provinces will also see plenty of summer stocking, while southern states will see more winter stocking as the weather allows it.

Keep reading for historical averages of trout stocking schedules; that will provide a good idea of when different areas begin stocking trout for anglers to catch!

Trout Stocking Schedules Across The United States

Trout stocking schedules vary by state and even by which body of water the trout are introduced to, so it’s essential to check with local government agencies for the best schedule information.

However, this article will give you a good idea of when different states historically stock trout so you can plan accordingly.

Stocking schedules are also subject to change based on weather and demand and may start earlier and continue later than expected.

1. Alabama

The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources typically stocks trout in selected waters during winter, primarily from November through February.

2. Alaska

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game conducts extensive stocking of rainbow trout and other trout species in various lakes and rivers throughout the state, from spring to fall.

I’ve extensively covered the habitat of rainbow trout in my article on Rainbow Trout Habitat.

3. Arizona

The Arizona Game and Fish Department stock trout in lakes and streams across the state during the cooler months, typically from October through April.

4. Arkansas

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission stocks trout in designated waters throughout the year, including tailwaters and selected lakes.

The stocking frequency may vary, but popular stocking times include fall, winter, and early spring.

5. California

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife stocks trout in lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the year, focusing on the spring and fall seasons.

Specific stocking periods may vary depending on the location.

6. Colorado

The Colorado Parks and Wildlife conducts extensive trout stocking in various waters, including rivers, streams, lakes, and reservoirs, from spring to fall.

Some high-elevation waters may receive stockings in late summer.

7. Connecticut

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection stocks trout in lakes, ponds, and rivers. The stocking typically takes place in early spring, around March and April.

8. Delaware

The Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife stocks trout in selected ponds and streams during spring, generally from March through April.

9. Florida

Trout stocking in Florida primarily focuses on the coastal areas and occurs during the cooler months, typically from November through March.

10. Georgia

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in various streams and rivers throughout the state. Stocking typically occurs in the cooler months, particularly in the fall and winter seasons.

11. Hawaii

Trout fishing opportunities in Hawaii are limited, as the state would need a significant trout stocking program due to its tropical climate.

However, some high-elevation streams and reservoirs may contain introduced trout species.

12. Idaho

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game stocks trout in various lakes, rivers, and reservoirs across the state. Stocking usually occurs throughout the year, focusing on the spring, summer, and fall seasons.

13. Illinois

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources conducts trout stocking programs in selected lakes and rivers during the fall and spring seasons. Specific stocking locations and dates may vary.

14. Indiana

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected lakes and streams during the fall, winter, and spring seasons. Stocking times can vary depending on location and weather conditions.

15. Iowa 

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in several streams and rivers during the fall and spring seasons.

Popular trout fishing spots are typically stocked before and during the put-and-take trout fishing seasons.

If you want to know what makes trout fishing so popular across the world, do check out my article on Why People Fish for Trout?

16. Kansas

 The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism stocks trout in selected waters during the colder months, from November through April.

Trout stocking is typically focused on urban fishing lakes. To learn about trout fishing from lakes, do read my in-depth guide on How to Fish for Trout in a Lake from Shore?

17. Kentucky

The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources conducts trout stocking programs in selected streams, rivers, and lakes.

Stocking usually takes place during the fall, winter, and spring months. You can read about trout fishing rules and regulations across US and Canada in my article.

18. Louisiana

Trout stocking in Louisiana is limited, and the state primarily focuses on warm-water species. However, there are a few locations where limited trout stocking may occur during the winter months.

19. Maine

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife stocks trout in lakes, ponds, and rivers throughout the state. Stocking occurs during the spring, summer, and fall seasons, with specific dates varying by location.

20. Maryland

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected streams, rivers, and lakes across the state. Stocking typically takes place in the fall, winter, and spring months.

21. Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife stocks trout in various lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the summer months.

22. Michigan

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources conducts trout stocking programs in rivers, streams, and inland lakes throughout the state.

Stocking typically occurs in spring, but some waters may also receive fall and winter stockings.

23. Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the summer months.

24. Mississippi

Trout stocking in Mississippi is limited, and the state primarily focuses on warm-water species. However, there are a few locations where limited trout stocking may occur during the winter months.

25. Missouri

The Missouri Department of Conservation stocks trout in selected rivers, streams, and lakes throughout the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the fall, winter, and spring, with specific dates varying by location.

26. Montana

Montana is known for its excellent trout fishing opportunities, including both wild and stocked populations.

Trout stocking typically occurs in lakes, rivers, and streams during the spring, summer, and fall seasons.

27. Nebraska

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission conducts trout stocking programs in selected lakes, reservoirs, and rivers across the state.

Stocking generally occurs during the spring, summer, and fall months

28. Nevada

The Nevada Department of Wildlife stocks trout in selected lakes, reservoirs, and streams throughout the state. Stocking typically occurs during the fall, winter, and spring seasons.

29. New Hampshire

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department stocks trout in lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking usually occurs during the spring, summer, and fall, with specific dates varying by location.

30. New Jersey

The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife stocks trout in selected lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the winter and summer months.

31. New Mexico

The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish stocks trout in various lakes, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking usually occurs during the spring, summer, and fall, with specific dates varying by location.

32. New York

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation conducts trout stocking programs in selected lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the winter and summer months.

33. North Carolina

The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission stocks trout in selected lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking generally occurs during the fall, winter, and spring, with specific dates varying by location.

34. North Dakota

The North Dakota Game and Fish Department conducts limited trout stocking programs in selected lakes and streams within the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the summer months.

35. Ohio

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking generally occurs during the fall, winter, and spring, with specific dates varying by location.

36. Oklahoma

The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and ponds across the state.

Stocking usually occurs during the fall, winter, and spring, with specific dates varying by location.

37. Oregon

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife conducts trout stocking programs in various lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking occurs throughout the year, with specific dates varying by location and depending on weather and water conditions.

38. Pennsylvania

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the winter and summer months.

39. Rhode Island

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management stocks trout in selected ponds, lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking usually occurs during the spring, summer, and fall, with specific dates varying by location.

40. South Carolina

The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected rivers, streams, and ponds across the state.

Stocking generally occurs during the fall, winter, and spring, with specific dates varying by location.

41. South Dakota

The South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks Department stocks trout in selected lakes, streams, and ponds across the state. Stocking usually occurs in spring and summer, with specific dates varying by location.

42. Tennessee

The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency conducts trout stocking programs in selected rivers, streams, and lakes throughout the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the winter and spring seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the fall months.

43. Texas

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams across the state. Stocking usually occurs during winter, with specific dates varying by location.

44. Utah

The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources stocks trout in selected lakes, reservoirs, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking generally occurs during the spring, summer, and fall, with specific dates varying by location.

45. Vermont

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the spring and fall seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the summer and winter months.

46. Virginia

The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources stocks trout in selected rivers, streams, and lakes throughout the state.

Stocking occurs year-round, with specific dates varying by location and depending on weather and water conditions.

47. Washington

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife conducts trout stocking programs in various lakes, reservoirs, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking occurs throughout the year, with specific dates varying by location and depending on weather and water conditions.

48. West Virginia

The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams across the state. Stocking usually occurs in winter and spring, with specific dates varying by location.

49. Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams throughout the state.

Stocking typically occurs during the spring, fall, and winter seasons, with some waters receiving additional stockings during the summer months.

50. Wyoming

The Wyoming Game and Fish Department stocks trout in selected lakes, rivers, and streams across the state.

Stocking generally occurs during the spring, summer, and fall, with specific dates varying by location.

Trout Stocking Schedules Across Canada

Trout stocking schedules vary by province and even by which body of water the trout are introduced to, so it’s essential to check with local government agencies for the best schedule information.

However, the below list will give you a good idea of when different areas historically stock trout so you can plan accordingly.

Stocking schedules are also subject to change based on weather and demand and may start earlier and continue later than expected.

1. Ontario

Lake Ontario: Spring and fall stocking of rainbow, brown, and lake trout.

Lake Huron: Spring stocking of rainbow trout and lake trout.

Lake Erie: Spring stocking of rainbow trout and brown trout.

Inland Lakes: Various trout species are stocked throughout the year, including rainbow trout, brook trout, and lake trout.

2. Quebec

Laurentian Region: Spring stocking of brook trout in rivers and lakes.

Gaspé Peninsula: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout in rivers.

Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean Region: Spring stocking of brook trout in rivers and lakes.

3. Nova Scotia

Various Rivers: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout.

4. New Brunswick

Miramichi River: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout and brown trout.

Restigouche River: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout and brown trout.

Tobique River: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout and brown trout.

5. Manitoba

Whiteshell Provincial Park: Spring and fall stocking of rainbow, brown, and brook trout.

Lake Winnipeg: Spring stocking of rainbow trout and brown trout.

6. British Columbia

Fraser Valley: Year-round stocking of rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, and steelhead trout in various rivers and lakes.

Vancouver Island: Year-round stocking of rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, and steelhead trout in rivers and lakes.

7. Prince Edward Island

Various Rivers and Lakes: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout.

8. Saskatchewan

Tobin Lake: Spring and fall stocking of rainbow trout.

Various Lakes and Rivers: Spring rainbow, brown, and brook trout stocking.

9. Alberta

Bow River: Spring and fall stocking of rainbow trout.

Various Lakes and Rivers: Spring and fall stocking of rainbow, brown, and brook trout.

10. Newfoundland And Labrador

Gander River: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout.

Humber River: Spring and fall stocking of brook trout.

Various Lakes and Rivers: Spring and fall brook, brown, and rainbow trout stocking.

11. Northwest Territories

Great Bear Lake: Spring and fall stocking of lake trout, brook trout, and grayling.

Various Lakes and Rivers: Spring stocking of lake trout, brook trout, and grayling

12. Yukon

Yukon River: Spring and fall stocking of Arctic grayling.

Various Lakes and Rivers: Spring stocking of lake trout, brook trout, and grayling.

13. Nunavut

Various Lakes and Rivers: Spring and fall stocking of lake trout, Arctic char, and brook trout.

Stocking Schedules are Usually Similar in Neighboring Regions!

As you can see, trout stocking schedules differ from location to location, but you can find similar stocking schedules regionally between neighboring states.

In most areas, you can find stocking starts in early spring and continues until summer and might pick up again in the fall.

In northern areas, you also will see more trout stocking in the summer, as temperatures remain cool enough for the trout to thrive.

Winter stocking is common in southern areas as temperatures remain in the 50s and 60s, even in the coldest months.

Shailen Vandeyar

A proud Indian origin Kiwi who loves to plant trees and play with my pet bunny when not freshwater fishing in the nearest creek or enjoying saltwater fishing by taking boats far in the ocean.

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