COLUMBIA- For the ninth year, trout have been released into Cosmo-Bethel Lake to encourage an interest in fishing.
The mid-Missouri chapter of Trout Unlimited teamed up with Columbia Parks and Recreation and the Missouri Department of Conservation to put about 2,400 rainbow trout into the lake for winter fishing.
"This is a good occasion to teach kids about trout fishing," chapter president Mike Riley said.
The stocked trout are usually between 10 and 12 inches long with some that are larger, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation's website.
A state fishing permit is required. Until February, anglers must release any trout they catch and use only artificial baits. Starting on Feb. 1, anglers can use any legal bait and keep up to four trout a day if they have a state trout stamp.
Riley said putting trout in the lake at Cosmo-Bethel Park takes the pressure off other streams. It costs about $4,500 to stock the lake.
Donations to the Winter Trout Fishing Program can be made at a donation box on site at Cosmo-Bethel Park or sent to Columbia Parks and Recreation, 1 South Seventh St., Columbia, MO 65201.
Bethel Lake is one of 52 trout fishing locations in Missouri and one of 20 public fishing areas in Boone County.
Supervising editor is John Schneller.