I went out bass fishing this evening at a local wildlife management area here in KC that has 23 ponds I believe. A few of which stock trout every winter and if they are not caught they generally die off when the water gets too warm.
Every year though I've heard of a few trout being caught that are well larger than the stockers that the MDC puts in every year, indicating that there could potentially be some holdover from the year before.
The pond I fished this evening is 26 acres so it's pretty small but as I was walking back to my car a man asked if I was trout fishing after he saw my fly rod. I told him no, there probably were not any trout still alive as the water was getting too warm. (It was approx. 85 degrees... I swam nearly every day for 4 years, i got pretty good at telling water temps by feel.)
He proceeded to tell me that he had been watchign some rise a little bit away from where he was. I really didn't believe him until he told me that he saw someone catch a rainbow two weeks ago.
By all logic there should be no living trout in that warm of water, let alone rising for bugs, and I can't believe that there are any, but there is alwasy that little question in the back of my head thinking could they really have somehow adapted to the warmer water and are getting by.
How deep is it? Also what provides the source of water, a stream? If the pond is spring fed the fish will pool up at the point on the bottom where the aquifer is supplying it. The ground water will be approximately 54 - 55* F, just right, hum......................
As for adapting, the fish will seek to regulate its body temp as close to 60 - 65* as it can. If there is a spring the fish could perhaps adapt to living on the spring feed and make short sorties to the surface and other strata for the purpose of attaining food then returning quickly to the sweet spot.
I have witnessed this behavior in Big Pine Creek and others during long dry summers in Pennsylvania over the years. The water temp can reach 80* and over and the fish survive by seeking out the aquifer seeps and small brook influx's of cooler water.
I dont know that anythign "feeds" the creek. I believe it is just a standing body. I do not know a true depth but I would imagine it could hit 20 plus feet deep out in the middle out of casting distance.
ther could be some places along the bottom that feed it or places wehre water seeps in but they are not visible.
If this is the case I need to tie up some real small dries and try to go catch some.
Night time would be the right time. During sunlight hours the convection heat will keep them down.
Now the real issue, do you really want to torture them if they are there? The chance of a trout surviving after a fight in the conditions we are referring to is extremely low. Sounds like you need to plan a trip to the mountains.
Out at Kanopolis reservoir towards Salina, there have been ocassional trout caught that apparently survived the warm summer water of the main lake, no doubt in a deeepwater spring hole. (Incidentally, they've tried to create a trout water out of a seep stream that collects water naturally draining through the dam. They thought that perhaps brown trout might be able to make it through the summer. I hear that the first test in summer 2009 yielded only marginal success).
There might be a cool spring or seep in the pond you describe, but I'd say highly unlikely.
The thing to do would be to try to measure the water temperature in different spots and see if there's a spring or seep somewhere.
Very good point Hardyreels. That really would not be fair to a fish to be taken out. I have been looking to catch and keep a few sometime to make some fish tacos, and since these are stockers I really dont feel to bad about taking a couple here and there.
I still even have to catch them. But I do plan on hitting the trout parks here in august, and Lake Taneycomo, a tailwater, which the conservation department can verify that a 36+ pound brown still lives.
In the past I would go after that at night (rainy nights) with a really big wet fly and my 9' 9wt and a level 25 lb Maxima leader. Now I would use the same leader but add a type 4 sink tip and a two hand rod so I didn't have to make back casts in the dark. I've became a two hand convert.