WILLIAMS FORK RESERVOIR INLET FISHING CLOSURE EXTENDED
In order to protect migrating kokanee salmon, the Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) has issued an emergency extension of the fishing and snagging closure on the inlet to Williams Fork Reservoir. The closure will remain in effect through Nov. 30.
To notify anglers of the closure, a buoy line in the lake and shore signs have been posted at the inlet upstream to the first Grand County road bridge. Anglers caught fishing in violation of the closure may be ticketed for fishing in a closed area.
"We've extended the Williams Fork inlet closure to protect any late running salmon," said DOW aquatic biologist Billy Atkinson. "The water level in the reservoir is higher than we've seen in quite a few years. It appears that the reservoir is taking longer to cool and the salmon are moving to spawn later."
Each year DOW aquatic biologists harvest eggs from thousands of spawning kokanee. Fish from the harvested eggs are raised in hatcheries and then will be stocked in lakes around the state next spring. There are only a few waters in Colorado where spawning kokanee can be collected and this collection process is the only way to assure a sustainable kokanee population into the future.
While they instinctually spawn, kokanee do not naturally reproduce in adequate numbers in Colorado, therefore the DOW spawning operation is critical to perpetuate the kokanee resource.
Kokanee die soon after spawning. In order to prevent these fish from going to waste, the kokanee from the spawning operation are given away once the eggs and milt are taken by the DOW.
This will be the last year that DOW officials will issue an emergency extension of the annual closure. The Colorado Wildlife Commission approved making the Sept. 15 to Nov. 30 closure permanent starting next year.
For more information about Division of Wildlife go to: http://wildlife.state.co.us.