The following press release is courtesy of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:
(Soldotna) – The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G), Division of Sport Fish will be using a fish pesticide called rotenone from October 8 through October 12, 2018, about five miles south of the City of Soldotna to remove invasive pike. Rotenone will be applied to a group of eight lakes and connecting streams located in the Tote Road area. Pike are not native to Southcentral Alaska and were illegally introduced decades ago to multiple areas on the Kenai Peninsula and the result has been devastating to native fish species.
ADF&G staff carefully evaluated various eradication alternatives and sought public comment before the decisions was made to treat the waters with rotenone. This application will provide a safe, cost efficient, and permanent solution to remove pike from these waters.
“ADF&G would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge our appreciation to the many residents that have provided valuable insight, feedback, and understanding as we move forward with this important project to protect Kenai Peninsula fisheries,” stated Soldotna Fishery Biologist Rob Massengill.
Prior to the treatment, signs will be posted along nearby roads notifying the public when the work will begin and that access to these waters is prohibited while the rotenone is being applied. The rotenone is expected to remain active until spring when increasing sunlight and temperature will naturally degrade it. If post-treatment surveys indicate the eradication effort was successful, ADF&G will release wild native fish; rainbow trout, coho salmon, and threespine stickleback, into these waters during the summer of 2019.
For additional information about the Tote Road area pike eradication project, including an Environmental Assessment and related Finding of No Significant Impact, please visit the ADF&G Current Rotenone Projects in Alaska webpage.
For questions, please contact Soldotna Assistance Area Management Biologist Jenny Gates at (907) 262-9368.