Avoid wading near spawning beds (redds) and fishing over actively spawning fish from November through April. These fish are the future of the fishery and catching them or harassing them reduces their ability to spawn successfully. Wading on redds can destroy eggs and alevins. Because of the cold water temperatures which slows development of the eggs in the redds, the young may be present and in danger in the gravel for up to 50 days after the spawn is over. While fishing for actively spawning fish is not illegal, most consider it unsportsmanlike, as well as a threat to the fishery.
Help stop the spread New Zealand mud snails. Mud snails were first identified in Putah Creek by aquatic biologist Ken Davis in 2003. They reproduce rapidly and crowd out other invertebrates that trout use for food. Clean your waders and boots before going to other waters. Learn more about these harmful invaders and how to prevent their spread.
Practice Good Catch and Release. Many of the fish caught in Putah Creek are large. Please land the fish as quickly as possible to reduce the stress on the fish. If taking a photo of the fish to be released, please try to keep them submerged until ready to snap the photo. More than a few seconds out of the water can irreparably damage their gills. Do not place them on dry ground and take as much time as necessary to revive tired fish.
Please be courteous of others fishing. Don’t fish where others are planning to fish and likewise, don’t stay too long in any particular hole or run. A little communication and common courtesy will go a long way toward making everyone’s fishing experience a positive one.