Teach a Trout a Lesson
The easiest time to catch trout here in Colorado is not
during spawn, a fly hatch, ice off, or any other answer you can think of. By far the easiest time to catch a trout is when they are being shot out of the back of a truck.
Is this moral and ethical? Catching trout every cast, with anything you throw at them. Starved, stressed, angry trout, packed tightly in a school of fear.
I say yes!
I primarily catch and release. I do remember every fish that I ate this season, the ones that I did not eat myself, I know who ate them for me. And how does this relate to hawking a bunch of tiny, eight inch rainbows coming out of the back end of a truck? They too remember many things that they eat. Because I am very careful with what I use, and my practices of catch and release, there are about 50 rainbow trout that now have tasted metal.
I truly think that the best time to introduce a child to fishing is right after a seasonal stocking. Some anglers would say that this gives children an "unrealistic" view of the sport of fishing. Great point. Next time you see a nine year old glued to his video games, unwilling to go outside; ask him how many fish he caught his first outing.
I could not fish more than one hour after a stocking truck has flushed it's load. Catching that many fish does get boring quickly. They all look the same, they bite on nearly anything, and there are no "big ones" to be seen. There is one thing that will interest me, watching new fish follow my presentation. Every cast gets results that you can watch. Every twitch, every lure, every speed you can study as these trout are willing to follow anything. Use this time to learn about what is going on in a trout's head!
So, next time your local fish and game department starts unloading new fish into a pond. Stick around with your kid. Enjoy watching your child catch more fish than he or she imagined. Enjoy catching a few yourself. Enjoy teaching those trout that the next guy's spoon might not be as nice is yours.