Saffron Restaurants reservation Colorado fisherman helps authorities fight huge invasive fish: ‘extremely rare’

Colorado fisherman helps authorities fight huge invasive fish: ‘extremely rare’

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Colorado Parks and Wildlife recently recovered 14 bighead carp from a local pond in Arvada, Colorado, thanks to a tip from a local fishing enthusiast. The fish, which are not native to Colorado, were found to negatively impact the ecosystem by feeding primarily on plankton and competing with native and sport fish species. CPW explained that bighead carp can grow to significant sizes and outcompete native species for food and resources. This discovery was considered very unusual by CPW officials, as bighead carp were introduced for a national survey in 1992 and persisted even after being removed in 1995.

Invasive species program manager Robert Walters said bighead carp were originally introduced in an attempt to reduce pond algae, but have since proven to have a detrimental effect on local wildlife. The fish have no natural predators in the area and an endless supply of food, which can cause them to outcompete other species and negatively impact the overall water health of the pond. CPW emphasized the importance of fishermen reporting anything unusual they encounter while fishing to help prevent the spread of invasive species and protect native wildlife. In this case, the discovery of the bighead carp was made possible by a fisherman reporting their presence in the pond.

The bighead carp taken from the pond in Arvada were all at least three feet long, with the heaviest weighing 46 pounds. CPW officials noted that the fish were exceptionally large, demonstrating the growth potential of bighead carp in both small and large bodies of water. Despite efforts to remove them in 1995, the species persisted and continued to pose a threat to native Colorado species. The discovery of the bighead carp sparked jokes about the movie “Jaws” on social media, but CPW expressed gratitude to the fisherman who alerted them to the presence of the invasive fish.

CPW urged the public to let them know about any invasive species they encounter in their neighborhood to help protect local ecosystems. The agency emphasized the importance of early detection and removal of invasive species to prevent further damage to native flora and fauna. Without natural enemies in the area, invasive species such as bighead carp can multiply quickly and outcompete native species for resources. Fishermen were advised to report unusual sightings while fishing to CPW to help maintain the balance of the ecosystem and prevent the spread of harmful species such as bighead carp. The successful removal of the bighead carp from the Arvada pond was credited to the collaboration between a concerned fisherman and CPW officials.