Lander, Wy – A genetically pure species of trout is being sucked into irrigation ditches near Dubois. The Wyoming Game and Fish Department's Erin Smith says biologists are tracking 41 Yellowstone cutthroat trout with radio transmitters in the East Fork of the Wind River. She says the department is gathering data so it can better manage the animal's habitat.
"One of the studies they are looking at is trout entrainment, which means the trout are getting sucked into ditches when water levels drop in the rivers up there. So late in the summer we are losing a lot of fish to the irrigation canals."
Scientists are trying to find out exactly how many fish are lost to the canals. Smith says the species is one of the most genetically pure in the U-S and any damage to it could make the cutthroat trout threatened or endangered.