July 31, 2012--CPW to kill all fish in Miramonte Reservoir (Telluride Daily Planet)

Colorado Parks and Wildlife is taking drastic measures to eradicate a species of fish in Miramonte Reservoir officials say is a threat to native species. In summer or fall 2013, the agency will use an organic pesticide to kill all the fish in the lake near Norwood in order to get rid of smallmouth bass. Officials say the bass were illegally introduced into the lake sometime before 2011. “Someone, we call them ‘bucket biologists,’ and people who think they know more than our biologists, will go to some lake where there are smallmouth bass and they will basically catch them and put them in a live well and take them to a lake like Miramonte and put them in,” said Colorado Parks and Wildlife spokesperson Joe Lewandowski. “They are prolific and can reproduce very quickly. Bass are predator fish.” According to the state agency, in one year, the bass population has exploded, increasing from 5 percent to 44 percent of the fish in the reservoir and competing with native brown and rainbow trout for food. Each year, Parks and Wildlife stocks about 60,000 rainbow and 10,000-15,000 three-to-five-inch long brown trout fingerlings in the 405-acre reservoir.

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