Two popular fishing waters in southern Utah, Panguitch Lake and Minersville Reservoir, will get chemical treatment to rid them of chubs and other unwanted species of non-game fish. A change in fish species in tributaries to Pan-guitch Lake is also planned.
A public meeting has been scheduled Wednesday, March 27, at 7 p.m. in the Garfield County Courthouse in Panguitch to discuss the Panguitch Lake project.Overabundance of Utah chubs have been a major cause of a decline in trout fishing at both waters in recent years, according to officials of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.
The Minersville Reservoir, located 15 miles west of Beaver, has also been plagued by fish-eating birds which consumer as much as 13,000 pounds of trout in a single year. Officials explained that chubs reduce growth rates of trouts, so game fish become vulnerable to birds over a long period of time.
The reservoir has had a history of excellent and poor fishing. for three or four years after treatment, it has been one of the state's best fisheries, producing high quality and large sizes of trout. Then the fishing declines. It was treated in 1984, but fishing has bene poor during the last two years.
The DWR foresees that continued drought conditions and low reservoir water levels will probably allow relatively inexpensive treatment in the fall.
About 20,000 pounds of rotenone will be used, along with liquid rotenone on a limited portion of the drainage above the reservoir.
The treatment at Panguitch Lake will require about 55,000 pounds of powdered rotenone.
Tributaries will also be treated, resulting in fish spawning that will contribute significantly to the lake's fishery.
Officials said future management plans call for establishing populations of cutthroat and rainbow trout in tributaries to Panguitch Lake, replacing brook trout that is now in the waters.