The reservoir at the bottom of North Wilton Road was drained for repairs last month. As a result, the fish living in the lake had to be removed. Trout Unlimited netted and removed hundreds of fish from the water above the dam, unfortunately, many fish singly went through the exhaust vents into the stream below the dam.
Thursday, October 4, SLS faculty and students mounted a rescue mission to net the fish below the dam. Before the rain forced them to abandon the operation, they successfully netted and relocated more than 3,500 trapped fish that would have otherwise died. Seventh grader Sydney Adamsen and Fifth Grade teacher Jane Olsen readily volunteered to work on this project with St. Luke’s Environmental Coordinator David Havens, despite an ominous weather report and the sheer volume of fish to be removed.
First catch was placed into the Silvermine River, approximately a quarter mile above the Silvermine Tavern. The second catch was a fairly larger volume, because we chose to net a smaller size and age of fish. These fish went into the Norwalk River, just north of the Perry Avenue Bridge. We selected smaller fish so as to not to upset the food web of the river by placing an unaccounted for number of large fish in the existing ecosystem. Mr. Havens and volunteers will be returning to the Reservoir next week to hopefully remove an equal number of fish. These fish will be placed in a different part of the Norwalk River, possibly the section by Broad Street.
In the meantime, the caretaker of the Gruppe’s Reservoir has opened a water valve to allow water to enter the stream, which will increase the oxygen of the system. Furthermore, the weather has also cooperated. The colder temperatures will reduce evaporation and the rain will add water and turbulence to the stream which will inject additional oxygen and remove CO2 and other pollutants.