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Hyatt largemouth trucked to Lost Creek Lake

Lost Creek Lake received another fat dose of largemouth bass Saturday when anglers and a state fish biologist pulled unwanted largemouth from Hyatt Lake and transferred them into Jackson County's largest reservoir.

The 2,524 largemouth were caught by 66 volunteer anglers fishing at Hyatt as part of an overall effort to re-establish Lost Creek Lake's once storied largemouth fishery, which was crushed by the illegal introduction of smallmouth bass.

"When you consider it's all hook and line, I think we did pretty well," says Lonnie Johnson from the Oregon Black Bass Action Committee, a team of bass anglers working on Oregon projects.

Most of the fish were between 6 inches and 10 inches long, Johnson says. One 5-pounder was caught and released.

It was the third annual transfer of bass from Hyatt — where over-population has stunted their growth-rates — into Lost Creek Lake, which once sported the state's largemouth record but now is dominated by smallmouths. It was the most fish caught for transfer in the three events.

Algae at two Klamath lakes

Blue-green algae blooms in Copco and Iron Gate reservoirs along the Klamath River have California health officials warning people and pets to avoid water contact there.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a host of state agencies and the Yurok and Karuk tribes are stressing that people should avoid water contact near these blooms throughout the summer.

The reservoirs are susceptible to summer blooms because of their warm and relatively stagnant water conditions.

Exposure to toxic blue-green algae can cause eye irritation, skin rash, mouth ulcers, vomiting, diarrhea, cold and flu-like symptoms, tingling, headaches, numbness and shaking. Liver failure, nerve damage and death have occurred in rare situations where large amounts of contaminated water were ingested.

The advisories do not include moving stretches of the Klamath River, where algae generally is in lower concentrations. A similar public-health advisory is in effect at Lost Creek Lake.

Coos Bay reserve celebrates

The South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve was the first of its kind when it was formed 35 years ago within a portion of Coos Bay, and now estuary lovers are ready to celebrate its birthday.

The reserve will hold a host of activities July 11 to celebrate its 35th anniversary. All of the events are scheduled around the South Slough Interpretive Center along Seven Devils Road just outside of Charleston, which is at the lower end of Coos Bay.

From noon to 2:30 p.m. a reception will be held so members of the public can meet some of the people involved in the creation and operation of the reserve. An anniversary cake will be served.

Also on hand will be a display about Oregon's state seashell, the Hairy Triton.

From 2 to 5 p.m., participants will be invited to hike the reserve's North Creek Watershed trail, which will be dedicated that day. Also, a new bridge will be dedicated at the end of the trail and spanning the slough's tidewaters.

The 4,800-acre reserve was dedicated in 1974 as the inaugural part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve System, which is a network of estuary habitats protected and managed for long-term research, education and coastal stewardship. There are now 27 such reserves nationwide.

The slough is managed by state and federal agencies and it also has its own management commission whose members are appointed by Oregon's governor.

For more information on the program and the slough, visit www.oregon.gov/DSL/SSNERR.

Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 776-4470, or e-mail mfreeman@mailtribune.com.