AUGUSTA — A remote 84-acre wild brook trout pond in northern Franklin County is one of several statewide water bodies to be affected by new fishing regulations.
As of the open water fishing season on April 1, it will be illegal to use or possess live fish at Twin Island Pond in Lowelltown Township, according to a news release Friday from the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
The intent behind the change made last month by the MDIF&W Advisory Council is to prevent further introduction of competing fish species.
According to a 1982 lake survey, only a few areas of Twin Island Pond have water depths greater than 5 feet to provide habitat suitable for native brook trout, common suckers and three minnows species: lake and creek chub and blacknose dace.
The site states that the other species compete with the trout for food and space, but also provide a forage source for trout that grow large enough to eat other fish.
The pond has a maximum depth of 9 feet and is accessed via a short hike over a trail that originates on the old gravel road between Holeb and Skinner.
Current regulations allow a daily bag limit of two brookies with a minimum length limit of 10 inches.
Caroline Hailey, MDIF&W Public Relations representative, said Friday that the Advisory Council approved several new fishing regulation proposals during its December meeting.
“Several of these new regulations take effect for this ice fishing season,” Hailey said.
For instance, the restriction limiting ice fishing to two lines per person on Mousam Lake in Acton and Shapleigh in York County was removed, effective as of Tuesday.
In addition to Twin Island Pond and Mousam Lake, other changes affect water bodies in Somerset, Piscataquis, Hancock, Penobscot, Waldo, Washington and Aroostoock counties.
Changes to the online rule book will occur as soon as possible and all changes will be available in the next printed lawbook, Hailey said.
For more information on fishing in Maine, go to www.mefishwildlife.com.