For the first time, you can catch and keep trout caught in a Hannibal city park. Trout fishing and harvest will start up Monday, Feb. 1 at Hannibal’s Huckleberry Park pond. It’s a new recreational opportunity that comes at a perfect time, since outdoor activities are safest during the covid pandemic.

The Hannibal Parks and Recreation Department recently trucked in 200 pounds of trout that are now making their home at the Huckleberry Park pond. In November, the pond was opened for catch and release trout fishing, but starting next month, the population will be established enough that you’ll be able to take your trout home and fry it.

You’re not going to see a lot of complicated fly fishing in town. Apparently, the best way to fish for trout in a pond is the simple live bait and bobber style, making it perfect for beginners or kids who love to see the strike of a bobber.

Individuals who plan to keep the trout must possess a valid fishing license AND a trout permit, or qualify for an exemption through Missouri Department of Conservation. The daily limit is 4 trout, and the possession limit is 10 trout. The only species of trout in the pond is rainbow trout.

Individuals that only plan to catch and release trout need only possess a valid fishing license. A trout permit is only necessary to catch and keep trout.

Fishing for other species will not be allowed until this spring. The pond has been stocked with fathead minnows, bluegill, sunfish, channel catfish and bass. Those fish need time to grow and repopulate before they can be harvested