Skip First Level Navigation | Skip All Navigation

Home > News and Events > Press Releases > MDIF&W: Brook Trout Anglers Wanted to Survey Remote Ponds

MDIF&W: Brook Trout Anglers Wanted to Survey Remote Ponds

June 8, 2011

MAINE DEPARTMENT OF INLAND FISHERIES & WILDLIFE

284 State St., SHS 41, Augusta, ME 04333
www.mefishwildlife.com
Main Number: (207) 287-8000

MEDIA: For more information, call Fisheries Management Supervisor Joe Dembeck at (207) 287-5022 Or Emily Bastian at Maine Audubon at (207) 781-6180 ext. 207 Or Jeff Reardon, Trout Unlimited, at (207) 615-9200 or jreardon@tu.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 8, 2011

Brook Trout Anglers Wanted to Survey Remote Ponds

FALMOUTH, Maine — Maine Audubon, along with its partners the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and Trout Unlimited, is seeking volunteers to identify previously undocumented wild brook trout populations in remote Maine ponds.

Anglers can choose one or more of 187 ponds in western Maine to find and fish. “There are no records of past stocking in any these ponds, so any brook trout found in them are native, wild fish,” said Jeff Reardon of Trout Unlimited. “Our goal is to collect information to help inform future management. Maine brook trout are a special resource, and we need to know where they are before we can protect and manage them appropriately.”

The project’s focus on remote ponds offers anglers a chance to explore new places while advancing trout conservation efforts.

“None of these ponds have been surveyed by Maine fisheries biologists,” said Joe Dembeck, Fisheries Management Supervisor for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. “It would take thousands of hours over many years for MDIF&W personnel to survey all of the waters on the list. Ponds where volunteers catch brook trout, or collect other information that suggests brook trout are present, will become priority waters for formal survey efforts by MDIF&W staff in future years.”

The state of Maine contains 97 percent of all the wild or native brook trout ponds remaining in the entire country, and has been designated as the last true stronghold for wild brook trout in the eastern U.S. Brook trout are symbolic of healthy ponds that provide habitat for other wildlife as well, including large aquatic insects, smaller fish, and fish-eating birds like kingfishers and osprey.

“Maine Audubon is excited about working with anglers on this project. Our staff has tremendous experience working with volunteers and MDIF&W on wildlife surveys, such as common loons, owls, frogs and toads,” said Sally Stockwell, Maine Audubon Director of Conservation. “We want to take the same approach for brook trout ponds.”

Maine Audubon and its partners will provide anglers with maps, photos, data sheets, and instructions for how to survey each pond. Volunteers should be enthusiastic about fishing for brook trout, be comfortable in remote settings, and have a sense of adventure. Surveys can be done any time before September 30, but preferably in June and July.

Emily Bastian, an avid brook trout angler and outdoorswoman, will be coordinating the surveys and assisting volunteers as needed. Please contact Emily at Maine Audubon at 207-781-6180 x207, or ebastian@maineaudubon.org, for more information or to sign up to volunteer.