Downeast Salmon Federation Releases Over 140,000 Atlantic Salmon into the East Machias River
The Downeast Salmon Federation has just released over 140,000 juvenile Atlantic salmon, called fall parr, throughout the East Machias River watershed. These juvenile salmon were released into many streams and throughout the mainstem of the river in an effort to restore the once great run of Atlantic salmon to the East Machias River. These fish were raised at the Peter Gray Hatchery located in East Machias at the East Machias Aquatic Research Center (EMARC).
This is part of an on-going project which uses an alternative rearing technique to more naturally raise fall parr. The organization uses un-filtered river water to feed the hatchery, dark colored tanks to give the fish a darker, more natural color so they blend in with their new surroundings in the river, and use specialized incubation boxes to raise the youngest life stage in an artificial nest which mimics the gravel nest wild salmon lay their eggs in. This project also includes increasing the numbers of fish that are stocked with a rigorous assessment plan to ensure no adverse environmental impacts occur. Fall electrofishing surveys are conducted under the direction of the Maine Department of Marine Resources, and spring smolt surveys are conducted at the Jacksonville Bridge on Rt. 191 in East Machias. This is the third year of the project, and the organization hopes to continue their efforts for many more years.
Please come by to visit the facility at 13 Willow St. East Machias. Community involvement and participation as well as education are a big part of this project. If you would like to get involved or learn more please contact the hatchery manager of EMARC, Kyle Winslow, at 207-263-7072, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can like the Downeast Salmon Federation on Facebook or visit their website at www.mainesalmonrivers.org.