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More Steelhead for Boise, Other Rivers

A strong run of hatchery steelhead has allowed Fish and Game to truck more of the sea-run fish to areas where more anglers will have a chance to catch them. On November 9, about 300 more steelhead joined some 200 planted the week before in the Boise River. Hells Canyon Reservoir and the Little Salmon River each received about 300 steelhead on November 7 and 8. The fish were trapped at the Idaho Power hatchery at Oxbow on the Snake River. This year's run of steelhead is estimated at more than 100,000, about 55 percent above the long-term average. When hatchery steelhead return in excess of hatchery rearing capacity, they can be planted elsewhere to make them available to anglers. Anglers need a fishing license and steelhead tag. Only hatchery steelhead may be kept anywhere in Idaho. Wild steelhead, those fish that have a full adipose fin, must be returned unharmed to the water. Anglers on the Boise River are allowed to use barbed hooks because the river no longer supports a wild steelhead population.