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The Mountain-Prairie Region


U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
134 Union Boulevard
Lakewood, Colorado 80228

August 20, 2001

Contacts: John Seals 719-486-0189
Karen Gleason

Leadville National Fish Hatchery Hosts Aid Station for Trail 100 Footrace

About a quarter-way into the grueling 100-mile long run starting before daybreak Saturday morning, then again at about the three-quarter mark, 500 competitors found food, medical care, a change of clothes and shoes, and the friendly faces of community volunteers at the historic Leadville National Fish Hatchery at the base of the Mt. Massive Wilderness Area.

The fish hatchery stayed opened around the clock during the 30-hour Leadville Trail 100, "The Race Across The Sky," as it has each year since the annual event started in 1983. Services provided by the hatchery include a kitchen serving thousands of hot meals to runners and their crews and an on-site MASH medical unit administering requiring medical check-ups.

"We are always happy to be involved with supporting the event, which has such a positive impact on the local community and Colorado," said Regional Director Ralph Morgenweck.

Leadville National Fish Hatchery produces and stocks over 200,000 trout a year in over 20 different areas throughout Colorado, resulting in 55,000 angler days of recreational fishing in the state, valued at over $2,740,000. The hatchery also supports the recovery of endangered Colorado River fishes by stocking non-competitive native cutthroat trout.

Funding to keep the historic Leadville National Fish Hatchery operational beyond the year 2003 and expand its programs was introduced by Senator Wayne Allard into the Interior Appropriations Bill and is currently under consideration by Congress.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal Federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 94-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System which encompasses more than 535 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 70 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resource offices and 78 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces Federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Aid program that distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.

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