Published on 12/7/2012
By Barbara Gengler
For The Times
The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, Sen. Yancey McGill, Rep. Carl Anderson and local fishermen were all on hand recently to stock redbreast sunfish fingerlings at the Pump House Landing on the Black River in Andrews between Williamsburg and Georgetown counties.
Anglers in South Carolina spend almost $742 million to fish each year, making the sport, with economic multipliers factored in, a billion dollar business in the Palmetto State.
"At our hatchery in Bonneau we raise striped bass, blue gill and this year we're raising some redbreast," said DNR's Forrest Sessions. "All of the fingerlings were produced at the Dennis Wildlife Center Fish Hatchery in Bonneau."
The aim of the center in Bonneau is to produce fingerling striped bass and their hybrids for stocking in reservoirs and coastal streams.
According to Sessions, DNR stocks the fish for local residents.
"They can put their boats in here at the landing and fish up and down the river," he said. "We stock reservoirs here in South Carolina, different coastal rivers for sport fishing."
The DNR annually stocks from seven to 10 million fish in state waters, including striped and hybrid bass, largemouth and smallmouth bass, channel and blue catfish, redbreast, bluegill, rainbow and others.
DNR's Ross Self and Lynn Quattro were also at the Andrews site.
The Black River flows through the Coastal Plain of South Carolina. The headwaters originate in Lee County south of the town of Bishopville and the river flows southeasterly through the counties of Sumter, Clarendon, and Williamsburg for 150 miles as it makes its way to join with the Great Pee Dee River in Georgetown County.