New rules expand protection of our native brook trout

I’m very proud of the effort I led to protect our native brook trout in their lakes and ponds. And I was very pleased last year when DIFW expanded that protection to the tributaries to those lakes and ponds.

A recent press release from the department provided the following information:

Use or possession of live fish as bait is now prohibited under the general fishing law in the North zone. All waters in the North zone where the use of live bait is permitted now have the special law code S-11 in the 2020 open water and ice fishing laws, which you can access here:

This change reinforces the importance of the region’s native and wild brook trout populations, and stresses the potential damage to those fisheries when bait fish are introduced where they don’t belong.

George Smith

About George Smith

George stepped down at the end of 2010 after 18 years as the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine to write full time. He writes a weekly editorial page column in the Kennebec Journal and Waterville Morning Sentinel, a weekly travel column in those same newspapers (with his wife Linda), monthly columns in The Maine Sportsman magazine, two outdoor news blogs (one on his website,, and one on the website of the Bangor Daily News), and special columns for many publications and newsletters. Islandport Press published a book of George's favorite columns, "A Life Lived Outdoors" in 2014. In 2014, George also won a Maine Press Association award for writing the state's bet sports blog. In 2016, Down East Books published George's book, Maine Sporting Camps, and Islandport Press published George and his wife Linda's travel book, Take It From ME, about their favorite Maine inns and restaurants.