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SAN DIEGO – A group of elementary school student went to Miramar Reservoir Wednesday to complete a project they began in class two months ago.

One by one, students in the third-grade class from Glen View Elementary made their way down to the water’s edge.

“We’re looking for the perfect place to put them in,” said Anthony Cadena.

He and his classmates have been raising rainbow trout for the past two months, beginning when the fish were tiny eggs.

“So we can release them into the wild and experience an experience that we’ve never experienced,” Cadena explained.

“That’s great for building a special connection with nature and makes them feel like nature is something they should care about and need to protect,” said Jennifer Imm, Education Manager for Escondido Creek Conservancy, who helped the students raise the fish.

Imms said some species of trout, like steelhead, are endangered in Southern California, partly because of dams and culverts in the streams they use to spawn. However, rainbow trout, a close relative of steelhead, are doing well. Imms said programs like “Trout in the Classroom” are meant to educate young children about the environment, including why clean water is important to an ecosystem.

Cadena said he knows one day in two or three years the trout he released into the reservoir will grow up and become adults. He also knows they may eventually fall prey to a predator or an angler.

“It’s the circle of life,” he said. “I like to fish with my dad and sister.”