A Delta area family with a concern for the health of a neighboring stream is being credited by wildlife officials for helping reopen Roubideau Creek to native fish populations.
Scott Dillon and his son, Doug, have a water right that comes out of Roubideau Creek for the ranch they have owned about three years. The water has long been accessed with a diversion dam near the mouth of the creek.
In spawning season, native fish have been observed stacking up in a flopping, slippery pile at the diversion dam in a futile struggle to swim past the structure -- "a diversion dam that has been a barrier to native fish," said Cary Denison of Trout Unlimited in an email -- and spawn further upstream. "The landowner was concerned about the health of the creek and the fish."
The Scotts got into a conversation about the situation with a wildlife official. Denison said that led to formation of a coalition comprised of Trout Unlimited, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the Bureau of Land Management, Nature Conservancy and the Scotts. Funding was arranged to for a new water diversion route which did not disturb upstream migration of three species of native fish in the Gunnison Basin that most don't know about or think about -- the flannel mouth sucker, the blue head sucker and the round tail chub.
The Scotts' fields will still get their water. On Tuesday, Feb. 28, workers assembled with an excavator at the site of the diversion dam and removed it.
On May 18, officers of the Delta Police Department, with the assistance from the Delta County Sheriff's Office and Montrose County Sheriff's Office, conducted a search warrant at 960 Crawford Avenue, Delta. The warrant was related to drugs, drug use and possession, drug manufacturing and distribution, firearms, cell phones and any other items which may be illegal, stolen or otherwise implicating in criminal activity.