by Ursula Burke
Several environmental groups (Mid-Coast Conservancy; Atlantic Salmon Federation) and Maine State agency (Department of Marine Resources) are advocating opening the Sheepscot Lake fishway to alewife herrings, American eels and parasitic sea lamprey eels. They say it is a river restoration project. But look at the history of the past 40-50 years on this lake. The lamprey eels damaged the rare, self-sustaining population of togue to the point that the fishway was closed for many decades. Now the evidence of damage to these fish has receded.
The Maine legislature will vote on bill LD922, introduced by State Rep. Jeffrey Pierce, who is also the founder and executive director of the Alewife Harvesters of Maine, to wrest control of the Sheepscot Lake dam from Inland Fish & Wildlife over to Marine Resources. Isn’t it a coincidence that alewives are used as bait for the lobster industry and that Mr. Pierce has an economic interest in having this bill pass? Isn’t this an obvious conflict of interest and an abuse of political position for personal gain?
And to reintroduce these fishes into Sheepscot Lake after many decades of being blocked is like introducing entirely new species. Yet no environmental impact studies or engineering studies have been done to gauge the impact to either the fish rearing station just downstream, to the existing fish population, or to water levels in the lake.
We, the Palermo residents and property owners of Sheepscot Lake, demand better consideration than this on behalf of this beautiful, balanced lake. It is a David and Goliath battle. Who will win…. the small town of Palermo or big business greed?
Responsible journalism is hard work!
It is also expensive!
If you enjoy reading The Town Line and the good news we bring you each week, would you consider a donation to help us continue the work we’re doing?
The Town Line is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit private foundation, and all donations are tax deductible under the Internal Revenue Service code.
To help, please visit our online donation page or mail a check payable to The Town Line, PO Box 89, South China, ME 04358. Your contribution is appreciated!
- Complex renovation would improve ADA access
- Sheepscot Pond will benefit from alewives
- Throwing in the towel as a PUL
- Earth Day, April 21-22 in China
- COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: This is one guy who’s tired of telephone scams
- COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: Where are all the employees? – “No one wants to work”
- COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: Kennedy’s observations spot-on correct
- COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: If you have VA questions, I will find the answers
- COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: Sheepscot Lake annual water quality update
- COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: No evidence that anadromous fish restoration would have negative impact on Sheepscot Lake