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DILLON — Shrimp, apparently, are smarter than they look. Or at least they're smarter than the trout in Dillon Reservoir.
While scientists may be hesitant to credit Colorado's freshwater shrimp population, Mysis diluviana, with anything resembling genuine intellect, there's no denying that the tiny crustaceans originally introduced to fatten up fish have an aptitude for survival. Meanwhile, it's the trout and salmon they were supposed to feed that are suffering.
"Mysis are really cold-adapted. They prefer temperatures below 50 degrees," said Brett Johnson, a fisheries biology professor at Colorado State University's Warner College of Natural Resources. "The original idea when they were stocked in Dillon Reservoir was to enhance fish growth, but they are actually competing with fish for food by coming to the surface at night as a strategy to avoid predation.
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