The San Juan Cutthroat Trout was once thought extinct until researchers rediscovered remote populations of the native fish and matched them to the last known DNA samples from the original San Juan River populations taken in the 1870s. Since the species was rediscovered, hatcheries in Colorado have been hard at work propagating the fish with the goal of reintroducing them into their native ranges.
But the reintroduction of these sensitive fish will take some leg work, and unfortunately, the eradication of non-native trout species in the native range of the San Juan cutthroat. One such project is underway in the headwaters of Wolf Creek in the San Juan National Forest.
According to the Durango Herald, “Colorado Parks and Wildlife will start an eradication effort Monday on Wolf Creek, which will result in a weeklong closure of a 3-mile portion of the creek. It’s part of a long-term plan to restore the native San Juan cutthroat to its historic habitat.”
You can read more about the rediscovery of the San Juans and their upcoming reintroductions in this in-depth article from the Durango Herald.