Shenandoah National Park Suspends All Fishing, Effective Immediately

Shenandoah National Park has announced the immediate suspension of all fishing in its streams and rivers due to dry conditions that have lowered stream flows and increased water temperatures. According to a press release on June 28, these conditions have caused some river sections to become “completely dry,” and despite recent rainfall, stream flows are expected to decrease further.

The release states, “Low flows and high temperatures create extremely stressful conditions for fish, and dissolved oxygen can decline to fatal conditions.” The additional stress from angling during these conditions could harm the native brook trout populations, which are already low in many areas of the park.

This closure impacts all streams within Shenandoah National Park’s boundaries, including both open-to-harvest and catch-and-release areas. The suspension will be lifted once stream conditions improve, which is only expected to happen with “significant precipitation.”

Such suspensions are rare, with previous closures occurring in 2021 and 2023 due to drought conditions. Earlier this week, on June 24, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality issued a drought warning or watch advisory for all localities across the Commonwealth. Shenandoah County and many surrounding counties are under a drought warning advisory, indicating that a drought is “imminent.”

Image: NPS
Source: WRIC

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