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Topeka Parks and Rec releases 7,000 pounds of trout into Shawnee Lake

TOPEKA (KSNT) – There are now tons of new fish swimming in Lake Shawnee, worth £7,000 to be exact. Shawnee County Parks and Rec held its semi-annual trout release on February 24th. The main boat ramp was lined with cheering crowds, as fish swam in the lake.

Because trout fishing season occurs during the cooler months, Parks and Rec holds one in October and one in February. The fish come from a farm in Missouri, so they aren’t native to Kansas, but Parks and Rec said adding them to Lake Shawnee improves the overall fishing experience. This is Parks and Rec’s 44th year of stocking the lake and each year the semi-annual trout release always draws quite a crowd.

“It’s funny that more people are out in the cold in February than in October,” said Mike McLaughlin of Shawnee County Parks and Rec. “I think it might just be a little cabin fever in the winter, they can’t wait spring. But yeah, when kids see trout coming out, some of them are pigmented differently, so they come out golden like giant goldfish. The kids start screaming, they love it.

Anyone wanting to fish in the lake will have to wait a few days, as Parks and Rec said the trout need about a week to adjust to the water. Shawnee Lake reopens at 6 a.m. on March 4, and Parks and Rec expects the lake to be quite busy.

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