CRLA Youth Corps installs rock ramp on White House Road bridge

Submitted by Frank Richards,
President, Webber Pond Association

Since approximately 2010, the China Region Lakes Alliance, the Three Mile Pond Association, and the Maine Department of Marine Resources have been slowly improving fish passage on Seaward Mills Stream, which connects Three Mile and Webber ponds.

This year the Youth Conservation Corps installed a rock ramp at the old cement culvert on the White House Road to help sea-run alewives, navigate the “lip,” when they return from the ocean to spawn in May. However, it will help all species move in and out of the pond, particularly trout in the spring and bass during the summer.

White House Road bridge before

Before the ramp was installed.

The lip on the old cement culvert is over a foot deep, which is enough to totally stop fish passage at low flows. Rock ramps are one of the simplest and cheapest methods to fix a problem like that.

White House Road bridge after

After rock ramp was installed.

It took a morning to dump the rocks and arrange them as a ramp. Bigger rocks were carefully placed to establish current breaks, which will provide an easier entrance into the culvert for fish headed upstream to Three Mile Pond.

I’d like to encourage trout anglers to give this spot a try in late April and early May. Those breaks should provide an interesting fish holding area, when the water is higher. Access to the site is easy.

Next spring will bring a re-evaluation. Almost surely, adjustments will be needed. That’s the beauty of a small scale project. You can make continuous low cost improvements, until you get what you want.

Many people and organization worked on this. The Three Mile Pond Association provided the rocks, the Youth Conservation Corps provided the labor, China Region Lakes Alliance provided the permitting and the Department of Marine Resources provided the design.

Youth Conservation Corps and Department of Marine Resources

The combined crew (Youth Conservation Corps and Department of Marine Resources), taken a little after the work was finished. Please note future biologist John Gray in the center of the photo.
Photos courtesy of Frank Richards, President of Webber Pond Association.


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