DV-10-22 Jump starting an ecosystem: reintroduction of forage fish to North Haven

Charles Curtin
Antioch University
PO Box 418
North Haven, ME 04853

In many coastal communities, local populations of sea-run alewives have gone extinct because they cannot access their spawning habitat due to dams, fishing pressure, pollution, and land use change. Curtin is working with local fishermen and other community members to restore alewives to Fresh Pond on North Haven, an island in Penobscot Bay. The hope is that restoring forage fish like alewives–which are preyed upon by valuable groundfish like cod and haddock as well as birds, mammals, and other fish–will help rebuild inshore fish populations. After initial monitoring, a culvert will be replaced and the stream reach restored to improve fish passage to Fresh Pond. Alewives were stocked with assistance from DMR in spring 2011.

Read the articles in The Working Waterfront, "Returning Alewives to North Haven" and "North Haven to Alewives: Welcome Back!"

Sea Grant funds provided: $4,000 to support students engaged in field work.