Ask Fish & Game

Ask Fish and Game is for general questions. Not all questions are answered. Urgent questions should be directed to your nearest office.

Some answers change over time; please take note of the "answered-on" date.

Displaying 51 - 100 of 143 questions
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A: Roseworth has been very good for 2 - 3 lb. rainbow trout since ice-off.  Night crawlers and DareDevils have been popular with anglers and fish.  Look for it to remain an excellent fishery through mid-May. We are just launching a site our Fisheries webpage where anglers can report on fishing ...
A: The rules pertaining to land-locked Chinook Salmon as well as Deadwood Reservoir and tributaries are found on page 22-23 of the rules brochure.  For IDFG regulation purposes, land-locked Chinook Salmon are considered "trout".  You do not need a salmon permit to fish for or harvest them.  Land- ...
A: Usually only rainbow trout from an Idaho Commercial grower.
A: The only exception that we can think of is during can't double the number of lines you use while ice-fishing.  In other circumstances, as long as you are in control of both poles, there aren't limitations on where you can use two poles.     
A: Thanks for the question regarding Potlatch River steelhead.  In the Big Bear Drainage, which included the West Fork of Little Bear and Big Meadow Creek, steelhead should be in the middle of spawning right now.  Our past surveys have shown that they typically start spawning after water temperatures ...
A: Assuming you are interested in using a bow or spear to catch fish; here are the details: Spear Fishing in Idaho You must have an Idaho fishing license if you are 14 or over. Archery and Spear Fishing is defined as: Fishing with a bow and arrow, crossbow, spear or mechanical device, excluding ...
A: You have a lot of great questions!  Please contact the Magic Valley Region office to talk to the Fisheries Department there about your questions.  The number is 208-324-4359.  
A: No other permit is required.  More information: Spear Fishing in IdahoArchery and Spear Fishing is defined as: Fishing with a bow and arrow, crossbow, spear or mechanical device, excluding firearms. This type of fishing is permitted only in the taking of bullfrogs and unprotected nongame fish and ...
A: The daily bag limit for trout on C.J. Strike Reservoir is 6 fish per day.  You can keep all the yellow perch, crappie, and catfish that you can catch.
A: October can be one of the best times to fish in the Salmon Region. Steelhead are starting to show up in the Salmon River, with anglers having the best luck downstream from the town of Salmon, ID. Anglers may also catch rainbow trout, westslope cutthroat trout, bull trout, and mountain whitefish in ...
A: We don't clip the adipose fin on hatchery produced rainbow trout unless they are part of a research project. We do clip the adipose fin on hatchery produced anadromous (ocean-going) salmon and steelhead raised in our hatchery system.  This is so anglers can distinguish them from wild chinook and ...
A: Sometimes in our zeal to manage these popular fish, we look past the fact that kokanee are a land-locked sockeye salmon and are not native to most lakes in Idaho.  The only exceptions are a couple of lakes in the Stanley Basin and Warm Lake in the South Fork Salmon River drainage that genetic ...
A: Yes, except when fishing for Chinook salmon (ocean-going), steelhead, or when fishing on Henrys Lake.  Just be aware, if you hook a fish and cause mortality after reaching your bag limit, you could be cited for an over-limit.
A: Because current rules do not allow you to spear game fish. IDAPA rule says,   201.FISHING METHODS AND GEAR. Unless modified by a regional exception, the following fishing methods and restrictions are applicable in all Idaho waters. (3-20-97) 01. Archery and Spear Fishing. Fishing ...
A: Ice fishing for Lake Trout can be great on Cavenaugh Bay, but it's not every year we get ice.  Unfortunately, there's not enough ice this year. 
A: In Daniels Reservoir, you can have up to 5 hooks per line.  So, if you are fishing with one line, you can have up to 5 jigs attached.  All must be barbless and you can still only keep 2 trout over 20".   F08
A: There is a very slim chance a kokanee could have flushed out of the Boise or Payette River system and was caught in Brownlee - but it's highly unlikely.  What you are probably seeing are silvery-looking rainbow trout.  Brownlee is a very productive system for rainbow trout in the fall and they put ...
A: The rule that requires heads and tails to remain attached (and that means to the fish fillets). The rule is specific to trout, tiger muskie and bass. The rule insures special size limits, bag limits, and specie identification is easily complied with. Recently this rule was removed from Salmon and ...
A: We did reduce stocking in Lake Walcott in 2013.  There are a couple of reasons:   First, the price of fish feed has increase almost 80% over the past 5 years.  This has caused us to reduce production in our hatcheries and focus the rainbow we stock to waters where high percentages of the fish are ...
A: Mountain lakes are harsh (cold), sterile environments and only a few fish species will survive - and even less, thrive.  Temperatures alone eliminate survival of all warm and coolwater fish such as bass, bluegill, catfish, and crappie. In the high-basins of Idaho, water temperatures remain cold ...
A: First, I apologize for our agency not answering your questions in a timely fashion.  That's poor customer service and I'm truly sorry.  We are working to do a better job and I guarantee we'll do better in the future.   Now for the good news - you can harvest brook trout from any water in the Bear ...
A: Your question's answer is available here:  
A: Hayspur strain rainbow trout typically are between 3 - 5 lbs.  at maturity.  With that said, if forage is good and conditions are right, you could see an 8 - 10 lb. rainbow trout from the Hayspur stock. F08
A: No Gerrard rainbow trout have been stocked in Hayden Lake.  The latest rainbow trout stocked in that waterbody are a Hayspur strain of rainbow trout from our south Idaho spawning brood stock.
A: Steelhead are defined as "rainbow trout that are over 20" in length."  Only hatchery produced steelhead (missing adipose fin) can be harvested during an open season.  If they are over 20", missing their adipose fin, with an open season, and you want to harvest the fish; then it must be recorded on ...
A: Our agency used to remove many beaver dams by use of explosives, but now only remove dams for very specific conditions.  Once of those conditions is when Idaho Dept. of Water Resources demonstrates that downstream water rights are being impacted by a dam.  Then we go in and remove the structure.  ...
A: Yes, we stock mountain lakes in wilderness areas.  We have a specific agreement with the Forest Service that allows us to stock mountain lakes by the same means and with the same species of fish as before wilderness designation was enacted.  If we want to stock new lakes or use aircraft to stock ...
A: Ok, if the Idaho Fish and Game Commission sets a season for ocean-going Chinook salmon, Chinook that are over 24" in length and missing their adipose fin are considered "adults" and must be recorded on your Salmon Permit.  Ocean-going Chinook under 24" are considered a jack salmon and you may or ...
A: I don't know what you consider a "problem," but bull trout appear to be doing fine in Idaho.  Redd (spawning) counts and trend fish sampling locations from throughout the state continue to demonstrate stable to increasing populations.   F08
A: Yes, a reward is still being paid for the harvest of lake trout from Lake Pend Oreille.  Contact our Coeur d'Alene office at 208-769-1414 for more details.  Funding for the program is being provided by Avista Power as part of their Lake Pend Oreille mitigation obligation.   F08
A: Yes, but...... The only brook trout we presently stock in Henrys Lake are sterile and can't successfully reproduce.  Their are still some natural brook trout in Henrys that migrate up the tributaries in the fall and spawn but survival of the eggs is poor. By placing eggs in a pressure chamber ...
A: Game Fish: Brook, brown, bull, cutthroat, golden, lake (Mackinaw), rainbow (including steelhead), splake and Sunapee trout; trout hybrids; Chinook, coho, Atlantic, and kokanee (blueback) salmon; grayling; whitefish; cisco; crappie; perch; bass; catfish; bullhead; sunfish; sturgeon; northern pike; ...
A: You can fish with an unlimited number of rods in Lake Pend Oreille, without a 2-pole permit, while fishing from a boat. Lake Pend Oreille is an exception to our rules on the 2-pole permit.  As part of our effort to recover kokanee in Lake Pend Oreille, we are trying to encourage harvest of lake ...
A: In the Portneuf River, no harvest of cutthroat is allowed. Rainbow cutthroat hybrids are often difficult to distinguish from either a rainbow trout or cutthroat trout.  To be on the safe-side, if it has an orange slash under the jaw, regardless of other markings, release the fish. In the Panhandle ...
A: Unfortunately, walleye are starting to establish themselves in Lake Pend Oreille.  They are an aggressive predator that can dominate a fish community under certain conditions.  We are concerned that another predatory fish in this system may interfere with our attempts to bring back kokanee and ...
A: Start with the Salmon River.  You can catch and keep two rainbow trout.  Rapid River is another water where you can catch and keep two trout.  In the summer, fish the 7-Devils Lake at the end of the road.  You can keep 6 rainbow trout and 25 brook trout.  If you don't mind a walk, the limit in ...
A: Panhandle Region Lake                                            Year(s)                             Size                                Number Blue Lake                                1989 – 2007                Catchable & Fing.                   1,499 Dawson Lake                          ...
A: This is a difficult question to answer because there are way too many variables that need to be considered.  Let me start by listing my recommendations by season. 1.  Winter - If you want to catch trout in the winter, there are several ice fishing and stream options.  The Boise River is one of my ...
A: You can have a maximum of 5 hooks per line in Idaho.  Each hook can have up to 3 points. F08
A: Call the Southwest Region office to see if they have recommendations for you.  Their number is 465-8465.    
A: There are no rules that require you to stop legally using two-poles (with a two-pole permit) when you are within one fish of your bag limit. Yes, technically you may exceed your bag limit by hooking two fish at the same time, but, realistically your odds of that happening are extremely low.  If by ...
A: Using dead fish and fish parts as bait is legal: Bait: Organic substances, other than rubber, wood feather, fiber, or plastic, attached to a hook to attract fish. Bait includes insects, insect larvae, worms, dead fish, fish parts, any other animal or vegetable matter, or scented synthetic ...
A: As long as you have the two-pole permit you can fish with two poles until your limit is reached.  You don't have to stop using two poles when you only have one more fish left to make your limit.  Two poles can be used for steelhead, Chinook and trout fishing.
A: Our guess would be a small parasite - possibly a copepod.  They cause ulcerations on fish that lead to what appear to be pustules and open sores.  There is no risk to human heath if the fish is cooked properly.  Many times, as the sores heal, there will be scar which look like grains of sand.
A: Yes, we do allow the use of game fish for cut bait when fishing for sturgeon. F08
A: You can keep 6 rainbow trout from Lightening Creek but none of those can be cutthroat trout.  That is from Memorial Day weekend to December 1.  After December 1, there is a catch-and-release season.  There is no limit on lake trout in the Lightening Creek system.  You can also keep 6 kokanee.  ...
A: The requirement that rainbow trout must have heads and tails attached while in transit is due to the fact that there are some fisheries with length restrictions on harvested fish.  Examples would be lake trout from Payette Lake (none over 30"); So. Fork Snake River brown trout harvest (2 over 16 ...
A: Yes, there are smallmouth bass in Long Tom Reservoir.
A: Steelhead are rainbow trout longer than 20 inches in length in the Snake River drainage below Hells Canyon Dam, the Salmon River drainage (excluding lakes and the Pahsimeroi and Lemhi rivers), and the Clearwater River drainage (excluding that portion above Dworshak Dam and lakes). Rainbow trout ...
A: Yes, freshwater mussels can be used for fish bait.  In Idaho, there are no limits or restrictions on harvesting mussels.  Once mussels are removed from their shells, they cannot survive, so they are not considered "live" bait.