TIPTONVILLE, Tenn. — Clarifying Alabama rig rules, new walleye size limits in Cherokee Lake and revised creel limits on designated stocked trout waters were among changes to the 2013-14 fishing regulations recently adopted by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission.
The regulations become effective March 1, 2013.
One of the most discussed topics this past year concerned Alabama rigs. Regulations surrounding multi-lure arrays created much confusion among anglers and TWRA staff this past year.
“The 3-hook changes is much simpler to interpret and offers a compromise between anglers that wish to fish five hooks with those that feel only one hook should be used on multi-lure arrays,” said Bobby Wilson, TWRA Fisheries Division chief.
Single-point, double-point and treble hooks would each be counted as one hook. Sabiki-type rigs will be permitted. A sabiki-type rig is typically used to catch bait fish.
A new regulation for Cherokee Reservoir changes the current 18-inch minimum length limit on walleye with a five-fish creel to a 15-inch minimum limit on walleye, sauger and saugeye with a creel limit of 10 per day in combination. The rationale is that the original 18-inch limit was designed to protect spawning fish but is unwarranted because the fishery is supported by hatchery stockings from the TWRA.
Several changes are proposed for wild trout streams that are located in Cherokee National Forest. The following trout streams currently have more restrictive regulations and will be managed under the statewide regulations for rainbow, brown and brook trout (creel limit of seven per day in combination, with no size limits): North Fork Citico and tributaries, South Fork Citico and tributaries, Gee Creek and tributaries in Polk County, Wolf Creek and tributaries in Polk County, Higgins Creek and tributaries, Squibb Creek, Sarvis Cove, Dry Creek and tributaries (Greene County) upstream from U.S. Forest Service boundary, Rough Ridge Creek and tributaries, and Little Jacob Creek.
The following trout streams and their tributaries will have a five-trout creel limit with a single hook artificial lure restriction: North River and tributaries, Bald River and tributaries, Sycamore Creek and tributaries, Paint Creek and tributaries in Greene County from USFS campground upstream to U.S. Forest Service boundary line south of Highway 70 near Munday Gap, Rocky Fork (Special trout regulations are limited to Rocky Fork and tributaries upstream from the main entrance gate; downstream of the gate is managed under the statewide trout regulations), Laurel Fork and tributaries beginning at cable crossing a half-mile upstream from Dennis Cove Recreation Area and extending upstream, Left Prong Hampton Creek, Beaverdam Creek and tributaries from its confluence with Birch Branch downstream to Tank Hollow Road (USFS Road 300). This reflects an increase in creel limit for some streams and the elimination of a 9-inch minimum length limit for rainbow and brown trout on others.
The commission also removed the 6-inch minimum size limit on brook trout statewide.