Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery
I'm not a fisherman, but neither am I really one for going to country music shows. So I found this place one of the most interesting places in Branson. We visited the Conservation Center which had several informative exhibits on fishing (photos 2, 3, and 4), and also saw the incubation tanks (photo 5).
Guided hatchery tours are provided at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2 p.m. weekdays from Memorial Day to Labor Day. But we were there in the winter, so we did the self-guided tours.
The facility website says
The hatchery typically produces 1,125,000 catchable trout annually, weighing 301,000 pounds. Lake Taneycomo receives 700,000 catchable trout per year...
This facility completes all trout production phases. Egg incubation and early rearing is completed in the hatchery building in jar type incubation units, and aluminum/fiberglass tanks. Twelve, outdoor concrete raceways are used for intermediate rearing, and final rearing is completed in twenty outdoor concrete raceways. Three earthen ponds are also used for fish production. Spawning and broodstock holding operations are accomplished in four separate raceways. The area has a boat ramp and several fishing access points along Lake Taneycomo, where trout fishing is allowed year-round. You need to bring your own equipment.
All trout fishing areas require a Missouri fishing permit or exemption.
Permit prices as of July 1, 2009 are:
* Resident (ages 16-64) $12
(residents 65 and older and younger than 16 are exempt)
* Nonresident (age 16 and up) $42
* Daily Fishing Permit $7
* Trout Permit $7
* Daily Trout Tag (trout parks only) $3
* Daily Trout Tag (age 15 years or younger) $3.50
A trout permit is required to possess trout, except in areas where a daily trout fishing tag is required. Must also have a fishing permit or qualify for an exemption.
A trout permit is required for all fishing in winter catch-and-release fishing in trout parks; and for all fishing year-round in Lake Taneycomo upstream from U.S. Highway 65 bridge.