VERNAL (ABC4) – Anglers are being asked to keep any trout they catch that is under 25 inches at Flaming Gorge.

The reservoir is known for producing some of Utah’s largest lake trout, but currently has too many small lake trout. This can have a negative impact on salmon and rainbow trout populations.

In response to this The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is asking all anglers to keep any lake trout under 25 inches they catch, in an effort to improve the health of the fishery. (Bonus: They are super tasty fish).

“In the 1990s, an 8-year-old lake trout was about 30 inches long,” Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Flaming Gorge Lead Fisheries Biologist Ryan Mosley said. “Today, an 8-year-old fish is about 23 inches long. On top of the decreased length, the number of small lake trout in the reservoir has increased, and we’re concerned the situation is going to get worse. We’re managing for a balanced fishery of predators and prey, and currently, there are too many predators. Reducing the number of small lake trout now will mean healthier lake trout in the future, while also increasing the survival of trout and salmon that are highly sought after by anglers. They’re already growing slower and unless we can ‘thin the herd,’ it will only get worse.”

The lake trout daily limit is 12 lake trout, with one of the fish exceeding 28 inches. Anglers will also have a two-day possession limit of lake trout at Flaming Gorge.

In order to encourage people to fish at Flaming Gorge, several fishing tournaments will be held this spring and summer.

To learn more about these tournaments or about Flaming Gorge visit here.