AZ Game and Fish restock community lakes with catfish

Grab your fishing rods, it is that time of year. Arizona Game and Fish staff are stocking several local lakes with over ten thousand pounds of Catfish.

More than 14,300 pounds of the breed raised in Arkansas have been released into dozens of valley lakes including Encanto Park.

"We stock trout in the winter when it is nice and cool, a lot of our anglers really enjoy fishing for trout, but the water is just too warm for trout to survive much longer, so we switch over to the catfish in the spring months, and we stock catfish throughout the spring," said Joann Hill with AZ Game and Fish.

There are hundreds of fish weighing anywhere from 1.5 to 2 pounds. All of them are transported in three big boxes cooled to 50 degrees. Once the truck arrives at the lake, the temperature is raised up to 70 degrees before they were able to stock the fish.

The community fishing program provides a close to home fishing opportunity for anglers who cannot or prefer not to drive the longer distances to state waters.

"We have over 70,000 anglers that just fish our community fishing program lakes, so right here at Encanto Park, and Steele Indian School Park. West-side, east-side, there's a lot of people who fish here regularly," said Hill.

The truck with the fish left Arkansas and drove all day and night to get to Arizona so they can provide a season full of fishing fun. 

AZ Game and Fish announces the exact day of community restocking to the public lakes twice a year. That's to ensure that any fishing laws are not broken.

The other restocking events are announced the week of. 

Lakes in Tucson also were restocked.
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