Madison River Rainbows Rebound

In the category of tell us something we didn’t know, comes news of the Madison rebounding!

Yours truly on the Madison with a healthy Rainbow trout

Typical Grip and Grin Photo of yours truly on the Madison

HELENA – Rainbow trout are rebounding in the Madison River, the world-class fishing stream where Montana’s first known outbreak of whirling disease occurred about 15 years ago, devastating the rainbow fishery.

In the 1990s, whirling disease slashed the rainbow trout population by 90 percent compared to levels measured in the 1960s and ’70s.

Now, after a succession of rebound years, rainbows under 10 inches have “pretty well recovered to pre-whirling levels” and the population of those larger is about 60 percent of what it was before the disease, said Dick Vincent, whirling-disease coordinator for the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks until his retirement last winter.

Vincent has now embarked on a new career as a breeder of dachshunds, but the agency says Vincent remains the authority on whirling disease in Montana.

No word  on weather or not he is working on wiener dog breed of whirling disease resistant Rainbow trout that are twice as long as normal. WOOF!


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