The Wrack

The Wrack is the Wells Reserve blog, our collective logbook on the web.

Posts tagged mousam river

  • Loss of Aesthetics Leads Public Concerns on Mousam Dams Issue

    Wells Reserve Contributor | June 6, 2016

    Dam on the Mousam RiverFor the past 2 weeks, I've been doing my Kennebunk High School senior project with the Wells Reserve, examining the type and frequency of comments submitted to the Kennebunk Light and Power District (KLPD) regarding the possibility of dam removal on the Mousam River. I also reviewed information  addressing the concerns of commenters, to help people understand the probable effects dam removal would have on the river.

    The most common concern, noted in 15% of 232 total comments, was the loss of the river’s aesthetic. This encompasses the fear of a drawdown-like future, bad smells, and more visible mud. Approximately 55% of comments discussed either this, decreased river recreation, harm to the wetlands, or a possible reduction in property values.

    Information provided by the KLPD through a contractor's report (Wright-Pierce report), and a researcher at Bates College addressed these primary public concerns, as summarized here.

  • Spring Fish Work Goes Swimmingly

    Wells Reserve Contributor | April 28, 2016

    For the past five weeks, our research staff have been out fishing in the rivers of southern Maine to provide up-to-date information on species with the greatest need for conservation. We have been fortunate to have the help of some dedicated community volunteers and members of the Sebago Chapter of Trout Unlimited.  This is the earliest we’ve been fishing in recent years and the catch has been diverse and exciting!

  • Mousam River Too Hot For Native Fish

    | April 1, 2015

    The Wells Reserve conducted a study of water temperature in the Mousam River during the summer of 2013. What we found were conditions that do not support native coldwater fish species during the most critical time of the year.

    To learn more check out our report on what we found:

    2013 Mousam River Temperature Study

    Fish are generally confined to the water, for obvious reasons: they breathe through gills, don't have legs, prefer to eat aquatic insects, etc… (actually some did manage to get out, but it took millions of years). But that doesn't mean they don't move around. In fact fish do a great deal of moving around to locate food, escape being eaten, and find a suitable place to lay their eggs. For some species this involves traveling great distances and even moving back and forth between the ocean and rivers. Other species stay closer to home and spend their entire life in one environment or another. But for these "resident" fish it is still important to be able to move within their local stream networks to complete their life history.

  • Water Quality Monitoring in the Mousam and Kennebunk Rivers

    | November 7, 2014 | Filed under: Observations

    Volunteers measure river conditions at 20 monitoring sites as part of a statewide program.

  • Spawning Season in the Mousam River

    | July 3, 2013

    Every spring the rivers of Maine are home to a unique phenomenon. As the water temperatures rise above 12.8°C (55° F) alewives begin their annual migration upstream to the lakes and ponds where they were born. This evolutionary strategy is known to biologists as anadromy and is shared with nine other native species including Atlantic salmon and rainbow smelt.

    Damariscotta Mills Fish LadderHistorically, the schools of spawning fish in our rivers numbered in the millions, and were a significant economic and nutritional resource. Even today, some coastal Maine towns have an annual alewife harvest where these fish are caught by the thousands to be sold for lobster bait, or even smoked and sold to adventurous gourmands or locals with a taste for traditional fare. One notable alewife run takes place in mid-coast Maine at Damariscotta Mills. The fish ladder that bypasses the dam at the outlet of Damariscotta Lake is a great place to see these seasonal visitors.