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Yellowstone Begins Cutthroat Trout Restoration in Elk Creek

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Date: September 25, 2012

National Park Service
U.S. Department of the Interior

Yellowstone National Park
P.O. Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190
   
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 25, 2012     12-082    

Al Nash or Dan Hottle
(307) 344-2015
YELL_Public_Affairs@nps.gov

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YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK NEWS RELEASE
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Yellowstone Begins Cutthroat Trout Restoration in Elk Creek

Yellowstone is taking another step forward this week in efforts to restore native Yellowstone cutthroat trout in park waters.

Elk Creek and its tributaries including Lost and Yancey creeks are located near Tower Junction in the Yellowstone River drainage.

Decades ago, the streams were stocked with non-native brook trout. Their presence has contributed to a decline in native cutthroat trout in park lakes, rivers and streams. Brook trout compete with cutthroat trout and often completely displace them and other native fish species.

This week biologists will introduce a fish toxin into the streams to remove the non-native brook trout as part of Yellowstone's Native Fish Conservation Plan and Environmental Assessment, which was approved in May 2011. The project will not impact the nearby Yellowstone River.

While the chemical Rotenone will be introduced in small quantities, visitors are advised not to swim in or drink from the streams now through October 7. Warning signs will be posted at all treated areas.

This year's treatment is the first in a series that is expected to continue over the next two to three years. Treatments will be conducted until brook trout have been completely removed from the streams. The park will then reintroduce genetically pure native Yellowstone cutthroat trout to the streams. The long term plan is not only to support native species restoration, but also for these streams to provide a brood stock population of cutthroat for future restoration efforts.

More information on the park's Native Fish Conservation Plan can be found online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=30504.

- www.nps.gov/yell -

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Did You Know?

Bison in Yellowstone.

There are more people hurt by bison than by bears each year in Yellowstone. Park regulations state that visitors must stay at least 25 yards away from bison or elk and 100 yards away from bears.