The state DNR used a helicopter and a special lift bucket last week to stock 17 thousand trout in the lower Saluda River near Columbia. The rainbow and brown trout came from the Walhalla State Fish Hatchery in Oconee County. About six thousand of the fish can be identified with a tag that’ll provide a means of gathering data on a particular fish. This is being done as part of a study to collect information on the river’s trout population such as survival rates and the number of fish that succumb to natural and angler mortality. Anglers can help the Department of Natural Resources biologist by reporting their catches of tagged trout. In the case of young trout, the state encourages catch-and-release fishing. If given time to grow, the young trout can make for trophy size.