The Colorado Division of Wildlife began harvesting the fish at Prospect Lake on Monday. That’s so the lakebed can be lined with 150,000 cubic yards of clay. That will stop lake water from seeping into the ground.
The project is supposed to finish sometime next year. But before they can begin, they have to remove most of the fish. On Monday, DOW workers set up four 50-foot long nets throughout the lake. The nets act like a funnel. The fish will swim through a large opening on one end and will be trapped at the other end.
The DOW expects the process to take a couple of weeks to catch the 20,000 to 30,000 fish. If they're not getting the results they want, they will set up as many as 12 nets. And if that doesn't work, they will start the process of emitting weak electric waves to stimulate the fish to come to the surface, where they'll be easily caught.
DOW officials do expect some fish to die, but they say, it's better than the alternatives. "The Division of Wildlife expects to see some losses. But this is better than dropping down pumps in here and pumping this thing dry and just letting the fish lay at the bottom," says Paul Butcher, Colorado Springs Parks and Recreation Director.
There is also some good news for people who like to fish. The Division of Wildlife is encouraging people to come and fish here. The fish will be relocated to places like Pueblo and Pikeview Resevoirs and Quail Lake.