More than 184,000 freshly stocked rainbow trout will be available when anglers cast their lines on the opening day of trout season Saturday.

The season kicks off at 8 a.m., when about 100,000 anglers of all ages are expected to head to their favorite fishing spots. About 570,000 rainbow trout will be stocked statewide by the end of the season in late May.

Most trout will average 10½ inches, but larger fish, measuring 14 inches to 23 inches and weighing up to 7 pounds, will also be distributed in the early weeks of the season.

Areas to be stocked locally include Birch Grove Park in Northfield, Hammonton Lake, Ponderlodge Pond in Lower Township, South Vineland Park Pond and Tuckahoe Lake in Upper Township.

“The DEP’s Division of Fish and Wildlife has been stocking beautiful rainbow trout raised at the Pequest Trout Hatchery in Warren County statewide for several weeks,” said Catherine R. McCabe, commissioner of the state Department of Environmental Protection.

The state’s 14 major trout streams are stocked every week through May 24. They are closed for fishing from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the day of stocking, to allow the trout a chance to disperse.

“Every county has waters that are stocked with trout,” said Dave Golden, acting director of the Division of Fish and Wildlife, “which means that excellent fishing opportunities and access to great places to fish are always close to home.”

Anyone 16 or older must obtain a New Jersey fishing license and trout stamp to fish for trout. Anglers can purchase them at nj.wildlifelicense.com or through license agents. A list of license agents is available at njfishandwildlife.com/agentlst.htm. Trout stocking information is available through the Trout Stocking Hotline at 609-633-6765.

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