Milltown dam removal ‘adds to excitement of restoration’ for gaspereau, Abbott


Alewifes (also known as gaspereau), Alosa pseudoharengus, a species of anadromous fish, migrating up a river in Northern Maine, USA. June 2016. Nick Hawkins Photography

Fundy Baykeeper and our Marine Conservation Director Matt Abbott spoke to CBC’s Information Morning Saint John yesterday morning about the removal of Milltown dam along the Skutik (St. Croix) River.

Abbott told host Julia Wright he remembers standing along the wharf in St. Stephen in 2012 with his two-year-old who held a cut out of a gaspereau (also known as alewifes).

They stood on the wharf for a symbolic escort of the fish upriver.

At the time, gaspereau runs had peaked at approximately 50,000 individuals, with the species’ low being a run of 900 fish in 2002.

“If you had told me then … that we’d be talking now and we’d have just seen a run of half a million fish,” Abbott told Wright, “and we’d be talking about the removal of the first barrier to fish on the St. Croix River, I don’t think I’d have believed it possible.”

Listen to the full interview here.

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Milltown dam to be removed, gaspereau double in population