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Illinois Spring Trout Season Opens April 6 At 58 Locations Statewide

Springfield, IL – The 2024 Illinois spring trout fishing season will open Saturday, April 6 at 58 ponds, lakes, and streams throughout the state.

An early opportunity at select trout sites – the spring catch-and-release fishing season – will open Saturday, March 23. No trout may be kept during the catch-and-release period, but anglers can keep trout after the opening of the regular season beginning April 6. The daily harvest limit for each angler is five trout.

The Illinois Catchable Trout Program receives funding support by those who use the program through the sale of inland trout stamps. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources stocks more than 80,000 rainbow trout each year in bodies of water where trout fishing is permitted during the spring season. An additional 80,000 trout will be stocked for the fall trout season, which begins in October.

In Macon County, spring trout will be stocked at Rock Springs Cattail Pond for the foreseeable future and not Sportsman’s Club Pond. Rock Springs Cattail Pond is currently a fall trout stocking location.

In Wayne County, spring trout will be stocked at Turkey Run Shelter Pond at Sam Dale State Fish and Wildlife Area because the Sam Dale trout pond is undergoing rehabilitation. Signs will be posted directing anglers to the temporary site.

For the 2024 spring trout season, no trout may be taken from any stocked sites between March 15 and the season opening at 5 a.m. April 6. Anyone attempting to harvest trout before the legal harvest season opening will be issued citations. 

For information about all site regulations, anglers should contact individual sites that will be stocked with catchable-size trout. Not all sites are open for trout catch-and-release season and not all sites open at 5 a.m. opening day. 

The spring trout season offers opportunities for families to get outdoors and enjoy fishing. Resources are available online for taking youth fishing. All anglers, including those who intend to release fish caught before April 6, must have a fishing license and an inland trout stamp unless they are younger than 16, blind or disabled, or are an Illinois resident on leave from active duty in the Armed Forces. 

Fishing licenses and trout stamps can be purchased by using a credit card online. Visit ifishillinois.org for more information on trout seasons and other Illinois fishing opportunities.

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