Colorado's Teller Lake Threatened By Invasion Of More Than 3,000 Goldfish

By @Guneet_B on
IN PHOTO: Goldfish, kept in plastic bags for sale, are seen on the street in Algiers February 17, 2010. REUTERS/Louafi Larbi

The Teller Lake's aquatic ecosystem has been disrupted by thousands of invasive goldfish. The lake is said to be infested with about 3,000 to 4,000 pet fish.

The Colorado wildlife officials responsible for maintenance of the state parks and wildlife in the area suspect that someone dumped a few domestic fishes into the lake, which later on multiplied into thousands. The goldfish is a non-native species to the lake in Colorado.

The invasion by the pet fish is posing a threat to the native species of plants and animals since the explosion of the goldfish population has resulted in unequal distribution of the aquatic ecosystem resources. The threatened species of the native fish include sun fish, blue gale fish and channel catfish.

"Dumping your pets into a lake could bring diseases to native animals and plants as well as out-compete them for resources. Everything can be affected. Non-native species can potentially wipe out the fishery as we've put it together," said spokeswoman Jennifer Churchill from the Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW), according to ABC News.

The wildlife officials are considering the option of electroshock or draining of the entire lake to stop the further multiplication of the goldfish. Meanwhile, CPW is seeking information about anyone who drained the domestic fish into the lake, that has lead to the chaos.

In case of electroshocking, the fishes are paralysed and then collected. On the other hand, if the officials decide to drain the lake, then the fishes will be collected and later handed over to the Raptor rehabilitation Centre, where they will be used for feeding, reported The Washington Post.

Even though a few locals have asked the officials for the goldfish, so that they could keep them as pets, Churchill insisted that she would not like to encourage the practice to prevent any similar future instances.

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