Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency
Region IV has seven reservoirs totaling over 35,000 acres in Monroe, Blount, Carter, and Sullivan counties that currently support trout fisheries. Additionally, Green Cove Pond (Cherokee National Forest in Monroe County) is also managed exclusively as a trout fishery. All these have a year-round supply of cold, well-oxygenated water that enable them to support trout. Although some reservoir trout attempt to spawn in tributaries, these efforts are largely unsuccessful, thus stocking is required to maintain reservoir trout fisheries. Trout are stocked during the winter to assure that surface water temperatures are cold enough for survival. Similarly, length restrictions cannot be used to manage reservoir trout fisheries during the summer because surface temperatures are too warm to successfully release fish.
Approximately 155,000 9-inch (catchable) rainbow trout are stocked into Region IV reservoirs annually and represent about half of all trout stocked in these reservoirs. Fingerlings are not typically used as their survival would be limited in the presence of the predator populations (including black bass, striped bass, and walleye) that commonly occur in reservoirs. Additionally, about 100,000 6 to 8 inch lake trout are stocked in Watauga, South Holston and Chilhowee reservoirs each year. Brown trout stocking was initiated in South Holston and Tellico reservoirs in 2001 to create new fisheries that may have the potential for producing large fish.