Denver club adds habitat to Harriman

Photo courtesy of Tom Grace
Members of the Denver Bassmasters sunk these premade structures into Harriman Reservoir to improve habitat for largemouth and smallmouth bass.

DENVER — The Denver Bassmasters assisted the Colorado Parks and Wildlife agency with a fisheries habitat improvement project this summer at Harriman Reservoir.

The reservoir in the southwest Denver metro area had been drained for restoration, dam repair and elimination of unwanted aquatic species. The lake was subsequently refilled and stocked with bluegill. The wildlife agency plans to stock bass fingerlings in 2014 and the lake will be monitored for natural reproduction without the introduction of brood stock. The restoration plans also called for the sinking of manmade structures to improve habitat for largemouth, smallmouth and the other fish species to be introduced into the lake.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife Aquatic Biologist Paul Winkle coordinated the habitat improvement project and provided the boat for transporting and placing Mossback Fish Structures around the reservoir. Denver Bassmasters club member George Maries worked on the logistics of building the fish habitat structures and decided to use the Mossback Fish Structures.

“After doing some research into buying products and making structures (with PVC in cement buckets) it made more sense to go with premade Mossback Fish Structures to save time and money, “ said Mauries. “A bonus was the product is also green since it is made from reclaimed plastic bottles.”

Nine Denver Bassmasters club members and Winkle assembled 10 Mossback Fish Structures the morning of June 9. Club members participating in the project were Jay McMillan, Sean Early, Mike Stevens, Steve Ehman, Ken Beiner, Micah Goldberg, Brandon Genova, Tom Grace and Mauries.

“The attractors came as a kit from Mossback and went together easily,” said Grace. “After unpacking all the parts and during one trial run, all the structures were assembled in about an hour and a half and sunk on multiple trips onto the water in about another hour and a half.”

Winkle told the club members he envisions Harriman offering anglers a chance at a trophy catch in the coming years.

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