Lake Davis Poisoning

The waves hit the shore here at Lake Davis just as they have for decades and decades.

But back in 19-94 something changed...Fish and Game Officials say someone introduced the Northern Pike into this Northern California Lake with devastating consequences.

Stafford Lehr A Senior FIshery Biologist says the pike is a fish to be recokoned with.

"The northern pike is a top of the line predator. And they can adversely prey upon those other fish and drive them to levels where they can be threatened or become endangered."

Lehr is helping head up the latest efforts to eradicate the pike from Lake Davis. He was also here ten years ag. But this time he says with a safer chemical and a more extensive plan it will be different.

Lehr says, " We believe we will be successful."

Biologists are using a spray and drip system of Rotenone on several streams and tributaries that feed Lake Davis, The chemical they say affects only those animals with gills so that mammals or birds that use these streams will be unharmed. The drip process will take about four hours today... the process was already working in less than 15-minutes of its application.

Once biologists are done with the streams and tributaries they will move down to Lake Davis. They will poison the lake.
Then they will go back to the streams and tributaries for another application..but they say it may take more.

Lehr says " To be effective on the tributary or stream we need to do it twice maybe three times."

The project has been met with no opposition from local residents.
Unlike ten years ago the city of Portola protested the move because of safety concerns with their drinking water as well as the perception they were being railroaded.The poisoning in '97 did not work, neither did placing explosives in the lake. Electrocuting the waters was ineffective.

Fish and Game believe it will be a different story this time because of better technology, surveying, and working with local communities.