DELTA COUNTY " The Bureau of Land Management announced the discovery of a large sensimilla marijuana garden located on public lands Wednesday afternoon during an annual aerial search for the plant.
According to John Silence, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Special Agent in Charge, the marijuana plants have a street value of more than $6 million.
"This operation appeared to have been going on for several years," he said.
The team, consisting of the BLM and U.S. Forest Service law enforcement officers, the Colorado National Guard and the Delta County Sheriff's Office, removed 3,000 pounds of marijuana from the Delta County location.
Due to the large amount of material, BLM used one of its wildland fire helicopters to deliver the plants to a location for destruction.
Since 1989, the BLM has been conducting aerial searches of its public lands.
"We want to ensure the safety of our public land users, operators and employees," Silence said. "These aerial searches help us keep illegal activity off the public's lands."
BLM manages 8.3 million acres of public lands in Colorado.