HAGERMAN, Idaho – The Idaho Department of Fish and Game has recently taken over operations of the Hagerman National Fish Hatchery.

The hatchery, which annually raises about 1.6 million steelhead for the Upper Salmon River, was formerly operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Fish and Game also owns adjacent trout hatchery in Hagerman.

Fish and Game officials said the agreement will provide "greater efficiency and better integration with fisheries management and research programs." It also will allow the department to better serve Idaho anglers.

“As the principal manager of Idaho fisheries supported by this hatchery, we are directly accountable to anglers,” Fish and Game’s Fisheries Bureau Chief Jim Fredericks said in a prepared statement. “We feel this agreement allows us to better serve the people of Idaho.”