Colorado fisheries experts working to rebuild kokanee salmon fishery in Blue Mesa Reservoir

Kokanee salmon caught at Green Mountain Reservoir, Summit County, Colorado. bberwyn photo.

Kokanee salmon caught at Green Mountain Reservoir, Summit County, Colorado. @bberwyn photo.

Big restocking effort could boost populations over the next few years

Staff Report

FRISCO — Predation by trout and fluctuating water levels in Blue Mesa Reservoir continue to take a toll on the Colorado’s kokanee salmon, state biologists said this week, explaining how they’re working to rebuild the fishery.

Earlier this month, Colorado Parks and Wildlife released about
3 million fingerling kokanee from the Roaring Judy Hatchery into Blue Mesa Reservoir, near Gunnison. The fish that reach maturity will return to spawn in two to five years. Continue reading

Colorado: Seeking balance in Blue Mesa Reservoir

Biologists strive to balance fish populations in a reservoir critical for Kokanee salmon; record egg harvest will help sustain Kokanee spawning program


Taking eggs from a kokanee salmon at the Roaring Judy fish hatchery. PHOTO COURTESY GUNNISON COUNTY TIMES.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Colorado Parks and Wildlife collected 11 million eggs from kokanee salmon running out of Blue Mesa Reservoir this fall. The record harvest will ensure that Colorado Parks and Wildlife will have adequate supplies for stocking 26 reservoirs around the state with salmon fry next year.

But biologists say much more work needs to be done before they declare the population of kokanee salmon in the 9,000-acre reservoir recovered. Kokanee numbers have declined precipitously during the past 10 years as the population of predatory lake trout boomed, knocking the fishery out of balance. Continue reading

Colorado: Fishing for millions!

Contest aimed at increasing fishing participation

Catching a specially tagged fish this summer could yield big cash prizes in a national contest sponsored by Cabela's.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Colorado anglers could score big cash prizes this summer by catching specially tagged fish in Lake Pueblo and Blue Mesa Reservoir.

Cabela’s, a Nebraska-based retailer, is sponsoring a “Wanna Go Fishing for Millions,” contest, offering anglers the chance to win cash prizes for catching tagged fish in 67 lakes across 19 states.

“The company approached us for permits to hold this competition,” said Greg Gerlich, aquatic section manager for the Division of Wildlife. “We reviewed their plans and eagerly said ‘yes’ to this effort to encourage fishing participation.” Continue reading


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