Nevada dam changes give rare trout new life 115 years later

National

FILE – This 2019 file photo provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service shows a Lahontan cutthroat trout recently caught at Pyramid Lake, 30 miles northeast of Reno, Nev. Federal and tribal officials are celebrating the completion of a $34 million fish bypass system at a Nevada dam that will allow the threatened Lahontan cutthroat trout to return to some of its native spawning grounds for the first time in more than a century. (Greg Ritland/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service via AP,File)

WADSWORTH, Nev. (AP) — U.S. and tribal officials are celebrating the completion of a $34 million fish bypass system at a Nevada dam that will allow threatened trout to return to some of their native spawning grounds for the first time in more than a century.

Construction of the fish-friendly side channel is a major step toward someday enabling the Lahontan cutthroat trout to make the entire 100-mile trip upstream. They would journey from a desert lake on tribal land northeast of Reno to Lake Tahoe before Derby Dam was built in 1905.

It’s a joint project involving Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe, two federal agencies, and the Farmers Conservation Alliance.

A model display shows the new fish bypass system on the Truckee River’s Derby Dam 20 miles east of Reno in this photo taken near Wadsworth, Nev., on Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020. Federal and tribal officials are celebrating completion of a fish bypass system along the dam that will allow the threatened Lahontan cutthroat trout to return to some of its native spawning grounds upstream for the first time in more than a century. (AP Photo/Scott Sonner)

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