posted on: May 19, 2023
Location: Bodkin Creek
This Rainbow trout was caught and released off of our pier. We are wondering how a Rainbow trout is in the brackish waters of the bodkin as we thought they were freshwater fish???
In the picture is my Granddaughter Olivia Frantz (older young lady) who caught the fish, her sister Emily Frantz with their Dad Ricky Frantz.
DNR note: Thanks for the picture and the article. Catching a rainbow trout in Bodkin Creek is really news! Barring unreported rainbow trout stockings in the watershed, the closest site where we (Freshwater Fisheries) stocked rainbow trout this year is Dicus Mill bridge on the Severn River. This site is over 27 miles away- as the fish swims. But I'm not convinced that is where the fish came from. The 'Eyes on the Bay's data at two of the closest locations showed both pH and Salinity being way out of range for trout (https://eyesonthebay.dnr.maryland.gov/). For example, near the Key Bridge/ lower Patapsco, Salinity is about 6ppt, or higher (saltier than average), and pH has been in the 7-8 range. Down in the Magothy, salinity has been high, in the 8-10 ppt range, with pH running up to 8.3 at our fixed station. Another possibility is an escaped fish from a private pond. We've also seen an uptick in number of people hoping to raise fish in backyard tanks for their own consumption. While these setups don't lend themselves well to accidental releases, it is possible they become the source for someone to intentionally release them, likely without the owner's consent or knowledge. Finally, there is a strain of sea-run rainbow trout called "steelhead" on the west coast and in the Great Lakes, and some sea-run rainbow, brown, and brook trout (known as "salties") around Long Island, NY and New England. However, those strains of sea-run trout are not known to be common in the Chesapeake Bay, and they probably could not survive our hot summers with water temperatures that rise above 80 degrees Fahrenheit.