Muskellunge have returned to Dewey Lake in Floyd County.
The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources has stocked 500 muskies measuring 13 inches apiece in the lake. While the lake is not slated to receive annual stockings of this species, department personnel will add muskellunge when excess fish are available from state hatcheries.
Dewey Lake was once home to the state record tiger muskie, a hybrid cross between muskellunge and the northern pike. The fish that went into the lake this week are pure muskies. The lake is within the native range of muskies in the state.
Currently, Dewey Lake is covered by statewide regulations for muskies: an angler may keep only one fish over 30 inches. Fisheries biologists will consider recommending a minimum size limit of 36 inches, the same as Buckhorn, Cave Run and Green River lakes.
Biologists anticipate good growth rates for muskellunge, as the lake has a good amount of forage fish to feed upon. Fish stocked should reach 30 inches by 2017, and 36 inches around 2019.