Fish restocked into lake near Nogales

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NOGALES, Ariz. (AP) -- The Arizona Game and Fish Department has restocked fish into the Pena Blanca Lake earlier than expected because of high rainfall from winter storms that replenished the lake.

Approximately 2,000 rainbow trout were transported by truck from the department's Page Spring Hatchery in Sedona to the lake northwest of Nogales on Tuesday.

Pena Blanca Lake reopened in August 2009 after being closed in the fall of 2008 by the Coronado National Forest. In the interim, it was drained to rid it of dangerous chemicals, debris and nonnative plants and create a mercury-free fishery.

The dredging project was completed in July 2009, but low rainfall amounts limited water to a small pool. Recent winter storms replenished the lake despite an initial estimate that it could take up to four years to refill.

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