Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Immokalee's Lake Trafford Fish Bonanza

FWC Stocking Lake Trafford With 150,000 Bass

IMMOKALEE, FL. -- Biologists with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) will stock 150,000 Florida largemouth bass fingerlings in 1,500 acre Lake Trafford, the largest lake south of Lake Okeechobee. 

Over the past few years, the lake has been the focus of a multimillion-dollar, multi-agency restoration project.  So far, participants have dredged the lake of 8 million cubic yards of muck that, in the past, triggered algal blooms and fish kills.  To date, the FWC has contributed over $3 million for dredging and re-vegetation of Lake Trafford.  Dredging could be complete by 2011. 

As part of the restoration, the FWC will restock the lake with native largemouth bass on Thursday, April 22.  The agency will stock an additional 50,000 advanced fingerlings about four weeks from now. These fingerlings are from the Florida Bass Conservation Center in Richloam.

'We are working to re-establish a self-sustaining, healthy fish population in the lake,' said FWC freshwater fisheries administrator Barron Moody. 'We anticipate that this stocking, and a similar effort planned for next year, will bring about the return of largemouth bass fishing to the lake.'   

An 18-inch-minimum-length regulation for largemouth bass specific to Lake Trafford is in effect in anticipation of these stockings and to protect the fish from premature harvest.  For complete freshwater fishing regulations, go to

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