The world's population of razorback suckers may be crashing, so U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources biologists have captured seven of the extremely rare fish from the San Juan River and Dirty Devil River arms of Lake Powell.
The razorback sucker has been proposed for the Endangered Species List, although it hasn't been officially designated yet.Biologists are working on a project to remove razorbacks from the wild so that they can be bred in captivity in an attempt to save the species. During a project in April, the Colorado Division of Wildlife captured an additional razorback sucker from a pond near Rifle, Colo.
"The fish will be used for research on their recovery, and when the young fish are large enough to survive in the wild, they will be stocked back into the Upper Colorado River system," said Connie Young of the Colorado Division of Wildlife.
Razorbacks are shocked with "electro-fishing" gear and netted as they float, stunned, at the surface. They are taken to taken to facilities in Ouray, Uintah County, and Dexter, N.M.