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Evaluation of Wild Brook Trout Populations in Vermont Streams

Wild brook trout populations in Vermont streams appeared to be relatively stable over a period of five decades as evidenced in this evaluation of 150 sites. Present-day brook trout populations sampled in 138 streams within 17 watersheds were characterized by abundant natural reproduction and multiple age-classes, including the contribution of older, larger fish. While most population measures were consistent between the two time periods, significantly higher densities of young-of-year brook trout were observed in current populations which may reflect improved environmental protections initiated since the 1950s. A decline in sympatric brown trout and rainbow trout sites also suggest that non-native trout populations have not appreciably expanded over the past 50 years.

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