California Department of Fish and Wildlife
brook trout

Brook Trout (non-native)

Salvelinus fontinalis

Brook trout are native to eastern North America and were brought to California in the late 1800's. Brook trout are currently widespread throughout the Sierra Nevada with wild brook trout occupying hundreds of miles of streams. Many high mountain lakes have been stocked with fingerling brook trout, providing fast action angling and tasty dinners while in the high country. Brook trout, like other char, are fall spawners. Most trout species require clean gravel beds in flowing water for spawning, however, "brookies" are capable of natural reproduction in the substrates of many high mountain lakes. In the nutrient-poor waters of the high Sierra lakes brook trout are prone to stunting where food and space are limiting. To help alleviate stunted brook trout populations a "bonus brook trout bag limit" has been established for waters of the Sierra and North Coast Districts. South of Interstate 80 an additional 10 brook trout less than 10 inches total length may be kept in addition to the regular five-trout bag limit. For Sierra District waters in Shasta, Siskiyou and Tehama Counties and in the North Coast District, the bonus bag limit is 10 brook trout less than 8 inches total length.