California Fish Hatcheries Reopen to the Public

SACRAMENTO⸺ On April 7, the public was welcomed back to the outdoor facilities of 21 out of 22 state fish hatcheries. 


Although the hatchery operations and stocking efforts have continued to remain operational, the hatcheries themselves have been closed to the public for the past two years due to COVID-19. 

Visitors were welcomed back to the outdoor areas of all the hatcheries, including raceways and picnic spots. 


The hatcheries offer activities like fish feeding, nature walks, and educational kiosks.


 “A visit to a fish hatchery is a fun-filled outing for both kids and adults – and it’s free, which is a difficult opportunity to find in today’s world,” said Ken Kundargi, CDFW’s Hatchery Program Manager, in an April 6 press release. “The staff are excited to welcome the public back. The atmosphere at our hatcheries has just not been the same without visitors. Please come see us soon!” 


Southern California offers the opportunity to visit two hatcheries, including the Mojave River Hatchery in Victorville, a significant producer, and supplier for Southern California. 


Construction on the Mojave River Hatchery began in 1947 and is located in the western Mojave Desert. The hatchery initially had only four ponds and expanded to 16 ponds in 1949 and another 20 ponds in 1952. 


The Kern River Hatchery will remain closed while the water supply pipelines are upgraded. 

To learn more about the individual hatcheries, see the CDFW website at


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