CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking - Colorado Fishing Forum

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Old 07-26-2012, 05:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

ILLEGAL STOCKING HITS MIRAMONTE TROUT FISHERY


MONTROSE, Colo. Colorado Parks and Wildlife is planning to take action to eradicate smallmouth bass at Miramonte Reservoir where they've become established after being stocked illegally.

The agency will utilize an organic pesticide to kill all the fish in the reservoir and then rebuild this renowned trout fishery that attracts anglers from throughout the West. The operation is tentatively scheduled to occur in late summer or fall of 2013.

In the meantime, Parks and Wildlife is implementing an emergency order that removes all bag and possession limits on smallmouth bass at Miramonte Reservoir.

"Killing all the fish in the reservoir lake is something we wish we didn't have to do, but we know we must," said Renzo DelPiccolo, area wildlife manager in Montrose. "People who illegally move fish into lakes, ponds and rivers are not only committing a criminal act, they are endangering native species, stealing a resource and recreational opportunity from thousands of anglers and negatively impacting the local community."

Miramonte Reservoir is located in San Miguel County about 10 miles south of Norwood in western Colorado. The reservoir is one of the most productive still-water trout fisheries in the state and people travel from throughout the West to catch the rainbow and brown trout that regularly grow to quality size. The lake is also a popular destination for crayfish enthusiasts. Miramonte accounts for about 20,000 angler days every year which contribute $1.5 million to the economy of San Miguel County.

Miramonte is a very productive reservoir, allowing Parks and Wildlife to stock thousands of fingerling trout every year. The trout grow quickly and reach quality size within two years.

"This reservoir is managed as a put and grow trout fishery and that management strategy will not change," explained John Alves, senior aquatic biologist for the southwest region for Colorado Parks and Wildlife. "Under this management strategy we can provide an excellent angling opportunity at a low cost to anglers."

Smallmouth bass, which are a warm-water predator fish, were illegally stocked in the reservoir sometime before 2011 and reproduction has been documented. A recent survey showed that in one year smallmouth bass have increased in abundance from 5 percent to 44 percent of the fish in the reservoir.

"The bass are now a top predator in the lake. They compete with trout for food and space, and consume trout and crayfish," Alves said. "If left alone, the bass could eventually devastate Miramonte as a trout fishery. Furthermore the habitat, prey base and water temperature will not support a quality bass fishery in the long term. So, once an illegally stocked fish population has become established, the only recourse is to start over by using a fish pesticide to kill all the fish in a lake."

In addition to impacting a renowned sport fishery, the smallmouth bass also pose a threat to native fish downstream. An agreement between the state of Colorado, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and neighboring states restricts stocking of non-native warm water fish without a permit because of the danger they pose to native and endangered fish.

Miramonte Reservoir is located above the San Miguel and Dolores rivers which support important populations of three native fish species that biologists are working to protect: the roundtail chub, the bluehead sucker and the flannelmouth sucker. These native fish are found only in desert rivers of the western United States. Changes in the river system such as dams, pollution, water withdrawals and competition from non-native species have caused these fish to decline in range and numbers.

"Native species are needed to help maintain the natural health and balance of any ecosystem. If a species is lost, that affects the health of other plants and animals, and changes a natural ecosystem forever," Alves said.

CPW aims to maintain healthy native fish populations not only for the benefit of native ecosystems and the people of Colorado, but also to prevent unwanted federal management of these species under the Endangered Species Act.

"Illegal stocking carries serious consequences that can have long-lasting negative effects on local communities," DelPiccolo said.

Draining and treating a reservoir is also expensive and takes money away from other important aquatic habitat projects. The Miramonte operation will cost more than $100,000, not including staff time. The reservoir will be drawn down to a small pool and the chemical Rotenone will be applied to the remaining water and feeder streams to kill all the fish. Rotenone breaks down quickly in the environment and poses no threat to vegetation or non-aquatic species. Biologists will restock the lake with fish as soon as the pesticide has dissipated.

Anyone who has information about illegal fish stocking at Miramonte Reservoir or at any other water in Colorado should contact the Parks and Wildlife office in Montrose at 970-252-6000, or call Operation Game Thief at 1-877-265-6648. Tips can be made anonymously and cash rewards are possible.

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Old 07-26-2012, 06:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

Funny that they talk about wanting to protect native species, yet they are going to stock trout in there...
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Old 07-26-2012, 07:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

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Originally Posted by shutupandfish
Funny that they talk about wanting to protect native species, yet they are going to stock trout in there...
That's because, according to the senior biologist of the area, "trout don't eat other fish."

What a sad situation we have. Guess we better kill all the fish in Chatfield for those Koi and ornamental fish. etc, etc, not sure that the Montrose County commissioners and the folks that lead economic development in that depressed area are gonna sit still for this one.

I absolutely do not condone or tolerate illegal stocking, Blue Mesa is an example of one of my favorite lakes messed up by illegal perch stocking leading to over-population of small lake trout. But, where does this thinking lead? Better kill Ridgway (smallmouth), Blue Mesa (perch) Rifle Gap (perch, pike) and many others on the Western Slope. Those illegals are at least threatening endangereds. The list we are going to protect have the status of Special Concern (where are they on this list) You East Slope folks better get ready to have your reservoirs poisoned because the list of SC and SE (state endangered) along with the threatened is pretty inclusive of several fish in YOUR streams and reservoirs. Illegal stocking occurs everywhere, but somehow only Western Slope fisheries are the "whipping boy reservoirs" that are made the example of, about time for some equality.
http://wildlife.state.co.us/Wildlife...edSpecies.aspx
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Old 07-26-2012, 07:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

what a bunch of bs, 1.5 miilion dollars funny money give me a break. while I hear it was a good trout lake the thought of a good sm fishery was great. Commerical crawdadders from down south come in and take hundreds of pounds of dads every year, so much for locals. when will it stop, Crawford next, Rifle, Harvey are all in their sights.....I cannot wait until I retire to get the heck out of this stupid place, thank the good lord Utah is just across the border.....
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Old 07-26-2012, 07:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

oh they will sit still for this. they dont want the feds to take it over because if the feds take over you will only have suckers to fish for. it's sad that some jerk couldnt leave well enough alone. now it's going to cost all of us over 100k let alone the hit on the econemy of the area
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Old 07-26-2012, 07:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

Quote:
Originally Posted by walleye seeker
oh they will sit still for this. they dont want the feds to take it over because if the feds take over you will only have suckers to fish for. it's sad that some jerk couldnt leave well enough alone. now it's going to cost all of us over 100k let alone the hit on the econemy of the area
that's my thought. The folks responsible for the stocking are the problem. not the DOW. I'm not saying that I agree that trout or nothing, but that is what is wanted in the lake. $1.5 mil a year is a lot of money for that community! That goes away for a few years. Sad that people only think of themselves.
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Old 07-27-2012, 06:30 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

wow they are going posion a lake and the best it gets is 5 post! tallly:

yampa river shock and kill
blue mesa net and kill
colorado river shock and kill
Miramonte drain and posion
boy the cpw have a busy schedule!!!
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

Bobco, you forgot about woods lake= poison and kill

CPW does not know how to manage squat, all they seem to know is put and take. Miramonte has growth rates similar to antero, kicks out pigs in a hurry, but it is no where near the destination fishery some think. It is in the middle of nowhere. The one thing that causes the fish to grow so fast is the crawdads, if they drain and poison they are going to decimate the food source, then it will be a slow growth lake and not worth a damn.


CPW= CLUELESS
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:31 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

With all the lakes that are drying up as well as the ones being "managed" by the CPW we arent going to have many lakes left here in Colorado.... Not that we had that many to start with!!
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:54 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: CPW to Kill all Fish at MiraMonte Reservoir due to Illegal Smallmouth Stocking

Quote:
Originally Posted by RVinson
With all the lakes that are drying up as well as the ones being "managed" by the CPW we arent going to have many lakes left here in Colorado.... Not that we had that many to start with!!
yeah i agree this sate is a joke thats why i spend more time fishing in nebraska and kansas
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