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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Fisheries Program has played a vital role in conserving America’s fisheries since 1871, partnering with states, tribes, federal agencies, other Service programs, and private interests in efforts to conserve fish and other aquatic resources. The Fisheries Program provides a broad network of on-the-ground expertise that is unique in its geographic coverage, its array of scientific capabilities, and its ability to work strategically across political and jurisdictional boundaries.
The Neosho National Fish Hatchery is the oldest operating federal fish hatchery in the United States. Established in 1888, the hatchery is located in the Ozark Mountain Region of southwest Missouri. It is one of 70 hatcheries operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with a mission to conserve and protect our nation’s fishery resources.
Over the years more than 132 different species of fish have been raised at the Neosho National Fish Hatchery. Today the hatchery rears primarily rainbow trout, pallid sturgeon, and Topeka shiners. Sound science is used to efficiently produce quality rainbow trout for fishing in modified habitats contributing to healthy economies. The hatchery also enhances recreational fishing opportunities through the stocking of rainbow trout into Branson’s Lake Taneycomo, providing an enormous boost to the local economy. The high quality and efficient rainbow trout production at Neosho NFH is just one aspect of our fish production that creates a positive ripple effect for all Americans. As many as 15,000 pallid sturgeons are reared onsite annually for release into the Missouri River as a continuous effort to offset the endangered status of this species.
Visitors are always welcome! The common areas throughout the grounds of the hatchery have been conditioned and maintained to a park status. Open pavilions are available for use, including an area where outdoor grilling can be available. These areas have been utilized for family reunions and other gatherings. Stop and tour the gift shop, walk around the open common areas of the hatchery and visit with the staff. A great place to visit! Educational, fun and a beautiful setting to enjoy the day.