More good news for Hermosa Creek

A long-planned move to re-establish the Colorado River cutthroat trout in the Hermosa Creek watershed occurred Wednesday when the headwaters stretch of the drainage was stocked with the native fish. Colorado Parks and Wildlife biologists and volunteers, including Trout Unlimited, planted 11,000 fingerlings about 3 inches long and 200 10-inchers in the main stem of Hermosa Creek upstream from Hotel Draw.

Fish were carried in bags from trucks and emptied into Hermosa Creek at various points. If the fish had to be carried any distance, they were transported in super-oxygenated water to ensure they arrived in good condition...

Preparation for the stocking Wednesday began in August 2011, when about nine miles of Hermosa Creek above Hotel Draw was treated with Rotenone to kill non-native fish, mostly brook trout...

Native cutthroat trout don’t compete well with other species, so efforts to increase their population – they occupy only 14 percent of their historic habitat – focus on giving them exclusive use of certain waters.

“Some fishermen just want to catch a fish and eat it,” said Buck Skillen, a member of the 5 Rivers Chapter of Trout Unlimited and a volunteer with Parks and Wildlife. “But there are a lot of us who think it’s pretty important to have a native fish."

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