Elkader floods cause hatchery to evacuate trout - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Elkader floods cause hatchery to evacuate trout

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An estimated 150,000 rainbow and brook trout were evacuated from the Big Spring Hatchery in Elkader Wednesday night as the town prepared for intense flooding.

The hatchery, which is right on the banks of the Turkey River, saw water breach the top of the levy designed to protect it.

Iowa DNR staff spent most of the day Wednesday and Thursday running trout to both the Decorah and Manchester hatcheries.

The DNR says because it takes nearly 15 months to raise trout to a catchable size, the move was necessary to ensure there are trout available for stocking not only this year, but into next year as well.

Trout from this hatchery ended up in 15 different coldwater streams in the area.

The Decorah hatchery hasn't been affected by flooding, but has been affected by highly turbid spring water that feeds it, so for now, stocking out of both hatcheries are postponed until the water level recedes and the stocking roads can be driven on safely.

The Manchester hatchery has not been affected and will continue to stock as normal.

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