Investigating the fish kill on the North St. Vrain
Credit: Colorado Parks and Wildlife
Investigative efforts by Colorado Parks and Wildlife to assess damages to aquatic life on the North St. Vrain Creek following last week’s tanker spill of gasoline into the river are ongoing.
CPW is assessing the extent and magnitude of the fish mortality. In large scale incidents, counting and/or collecting every single dead fish is not possible, however, there are statistically valid methods to accurately estimate the losses.
Since the initial response by wildlife officers, several hundred fish have been collected, identified, counted and stored as evidence over the past several days.
Mindi May, CPW’s water quality coordinator, and Dr. Pete Cadmus, aquatic research scientist at CPW’s Aquatic Toxicology Lab, spent Saturday assessing the river. They collected macroinvertebrate samples, took water quality measurements, measured algae and continued to survey for fish.
“We visited numerous sites on the river from just upstream of the crash site all the way down to the confluence with the South Saint Vrain,” May said.
As a reminder, it is not legal for citizens to transport live fish. Information and observations about dead fish or other wildlife impacts related to the spill can be reported to CPW at email@example.com.
As we continue to investigate the damages, we are also working with our partners at the Environmental Protection Agency, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and the Colorado State Patrol to collect as much information as possible.
Operation Game Thief Call to report illegal fishing/hunting: