On Thursday, Colorado Parks and Wildlife teamed up with the Bear Creek Nature Center to bring greenback cutthroat trout to their new exhibit.
“It’s a special day for us,” senior aquatic biologist Josh Nehring said. “Bear Creek Nature Center worked really hard and raised a lot of money to create a new exhibit for our state fish and spent today bringing the fish and putting them in our new aquarium.”
Greenbacks were thought to be extinct, until they were found in Bear Creek, just southwest of Colorado Springs.
“The only pure genetically pure strain of greenback cutthroat trout was found in Bear Creek, so we’re the perfect fit for it,” said Mary Low Newis, Bear Creek Nature Center supervisor.
A dozen greenbacks were placed in a tank filled with 300 gallons of water. In order to prepare them for their new home, each greenback was placed in different buckets of water.
“We had three different buckets with different ratio of aquarium water versus tank, so the first bucket they went to had mostly tank water, and as we transferred them bucket to bucket it was almost all aquarium water,” Nehring said.
The exhibit cost more than $250,000, but will be free of charge to the community.
“I think it’s a great way to tell people about this story, teach about the stewardship, and teach how they can contribute in keeping these species healthy,” Lewis said.