AP (NEW)

Chemical treatment to be deployed against invasive fish in Colorado River

Aug 18, 2023, 6:42 PM

PAGE, Ariz. (AP) — The National Park Service will renew efforts to rid an area of the Colorado River in northern Arizona of invasive fish by killing them with a chemical treatment, the agency said Friday.

A substance lethal to fish but approved by federal environmental regulators called rotenone will be disseminated starting Aug. 26. It’s the latest tactic in an ongoing struggle to keep non-native smallmouth bass and green sunfish at bay below the Glen Canyon Dam and to protect a threatened native fish, the humpback chub.

The treatment will require a weekend closure of the Colorado River slough, a cobble bar area surrounding the backwater where the smallmouth bass were found and a short stretch up and downstream. Chemical substances were also utilized last year.

The effort will “be carefully planned and conducted to minimize exposure” to humans as well as “desirable fish species,” according to the National Park Service. An “impermeable fabric barrier” will be erected at the mouth of the slough to prevent crossover of water with the river.

Once the treatment is complete, another chemical will be released to dilute the rotenone, the park service said.

In the past, smallmouth bass were sequestered in Lake Powell behind Glen Canyon Dam, which had served as a barrier to them for years. But last summer, they were found in the river below the dam.

Due to climate change and drought, Lake Powell, a key Colorado River reservoir, dropped to historically low levels last year, making it no longer as much of an obstacle to the smallmouth bass. The predatory fish were able to approach the Grand Canyon, where the largest groups of the ancient and rare humpback chub remain.

Environmentalists have accused the federal government of failing to act swiftly. The Center for Biological Diversity pointed to data from the National Park Service released Wednesday showing the smallmouth bass population more than doubled in the past year. The group also said there still have been no timelines given on modifying the area below the dam.

“I’m afraid this bass population boom portends an entirely avoidable extinction event in the Grand Canyon,” said Taylor McKinnon, the Center’s Southwest director. “Losing the humpback chub’s core population puts the entire species at risk.”

Conservation groups also continue to criticize the 2021 decision to downgrade the humpback chub from endangered to threatened. At the time, federal authorities said the fish, which gets its name from a fleshy bump behind its head, had been brought back from the brink of extinction after decades of protections.

AP (New)

Associated Press

Shouts of ‘Shame! Shame!’ erupt in Arizona House as fight over abortion ban engulfs lawmakers

PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona Legislature devolved into shouts of “Shame! Shame!” on Wednesday as Republican lawmakers quickly shut down discussion on a proposed repeal of the state’s newly revived 1864 law that criminalizes abortion throughout pregnancy unless a woman’s life is at risk. The state Supreme Court cleared the way on Tuesday for enforcement […]

4 days ago

Associated Press

What to know about abortion in Arizona under the near-total 1864 ban

PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona Supreme Court gave the go-ahead Tuesday to prepare to enforce a long-dormant law that bans nearly all abortions, drastically altering the legal landscape for terminating pregnancies in a state likely to have a key role in the presidential election. The law predating Arizona’s statehood provides no exceptions for rape or […]

5 days ago

Associated Press

Democrats pounce on Arizona abortion ruling and say it could help them in November’s election

PHOENIX (AP) — Democrats pounced Tuesday on an Arizona Supreme Court ruling that permits enforcement of an 1864 law effectively banning abortion in the state, blaming former President Donald Trump and Republicans and pressing for political advantage on an issue that could dominate a critical 2024 battleground. The ruling permits doctors or others to be […]

5 days ago

Associated Press

Arizona can enforce an 1864 law criminalizing nearly all abortions, court says

PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the state can enforce its long-dormant law criminalizing all abortions except when a mother’s life is at stake. The case examined whether the state is still subject to a law that predates Arizona’s statehood. The 1864 law provides no exceptions for rape or incest, but […]

5 days ago

Associated Press

Latino voters are coveted by both major parties. They also are a target for election misinformation

PHOENIX (AP) — As ranchera music filled the Phoenix recording studio at Radio Campesina, a station personality spoke in Spanish into the microphone. “Friends of Campesina, in these elections, truth and unity are more important than ever,” said morning show host Tony Arias. “Don’t let yourself be trapped by disinformation.” The audio was recorded as […]

7 days ago

Associated Press

Air ambulance crew administered drug to hot air balloon pilot after crash that killed 4, report says

PHOENIX (AP) — An autopsy report has been amended to show the pilot of a hot air balloon that plummeted in Arizona, killing him and three others, had been administered an anesthetic after the crash. The Pinal County Medical Examiner’s Office said earlier this week that toxicology tests showed Cornelius van der Walt had a […]

9 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.

...

Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Chemical treatment to be deployed against invasive fish in Colorado River