Brown trout in ''amazing condition'' have been found in the
stream which supplies Lake Hayes, surprising Fish and Game
Otago's staff and council.
The lake had repeated algal blooms which posed a significant
and ongoing threat to the health of the trout fishery and
lake ecosystem, Fish and Game officer Clare Morris said.
In 2012, the public raised concerns about declining numbers
of spawning trout and the poor condition of the fish in Mill
Creek, the main spawning stream for Lake Hayes.
Fish and Game councillor Dan Rae said at a council meeting
this week he was ''amazed'' at the condition of the fish
sampled during the spawning run from Mill Creek to Lake Hayes
''I didn't believe that area could support that standard of
Ms Morris said despite the presence of healthy fish in this
season's spawning run, the water quality of the lake
continued to be of concern.
Fish and Game captured 55 brown trout in the sample.
A factor of 1 represented fish in an average condition and
1.4 represented optimal condition.
Those caught in May rated 1.23, compared with 1.15 in 2013.
The sample was considered to be healthy and in above average
condition with ''several outstanding specimens'', she said.
Average length (508.6mm) and weight (1651g), maximum weight
(2640g) and average condition factors all showed increases
compared with the previous season.
The Fish and Game Council this week agreed to repeat the
sampling next season.