Officials: Nearly 52,000 trout killed after vandalism at GA hatchery

The Chattahoochee Forest National Fish Hatchery and Fannin County Sheriff’s Office are investigating after thousands of trout were killed on Monday.

Officials with the Chattahoochee Forest National Fish Hatchery said that during the early hours on Monday, the main water line to the hatchery was cut off. This led to nearly 52,000 trout worth $62,000 being killed, according to hatchery officials.

"It's beyond me why somebody would do this," said Kelly Taylor, project leader at Chattahoochee. "Everybody and everything suffers as a result: the trout; the fishermen; and the taxpayers."

Taylor said that many of the fish were for stocking this year. “Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources, which is also experiencing a great year growing fish, may be able to pick up the stocking slack,” according to Taylor.

The hatchery was built in 1937 and produces one-million trout each year, according to hatchery officials.

"This season’s fishing should not be compromised at all," Taylor said. "Our state partners will pick up the slack. We always have each other’s backs.”

A $2,500 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the suspects.

The Fannin County Sheriff’s Office is investigating this case. If you have any information, please call them at 706-632-2044.