Front Range, West Slope agree to provide equal amounts of water, but some West Slope stakeholders are concerned about impacts to trout fisheries
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — A proposal to revamp water allotments for endangered Colorado River fish could benefit some fisheries in some streams while threatening economically valuable fisheries in other West Slope basins.
Some stakeholders in Eagle and Pitkin counties said they are concerned that the planned releases from Ruedi Reservoir could threaten the economically valuable trout fishery in the Roaring Fork.
But if the various stakeholders can make all the pieces fit together, it could be a win-win, with less water coming out of Ruedi and some additional flows from Granby Lake and Green Mountain Reservoir, according to Dave Nickum, director of Colorado Trout Unlimited.
Most trout species (with the exception of cutthroats) are not native to Colorado, but angling has become a huge part of the recreational economy. As such, the plan to recover the native fish sets up an interesting conflict between protection of endangered native species and potential impacts to non-native fish that are a big part of the culture and economy of the West Slope. Learn more about the recovery effort at this U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website. (more…)
Filed under: biodiversity, Colorado, endangered species, Environment, Summit County news | Tagged: Bonytail chub, Colorado Pikeminnow, Endangered Colorado River fish, Environment, humpback chub, razorback sucker, Roaring Fork Conservancy, Roaring Fork River, United States Fish and Wildlife Service | 2 Comments »