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NFC: Re: River runs Free

My hometown is Baraboo.  I remember awhile ago when I last visited the
parents that a couple of boaters died by ramping off the dams.  That chould
have been an impetus to get rid of the dams as well by chiming up public
support.  It's a bad way to do it, but it's effective.  I remember when I
was little I caught a beautiful baby smallmouth bass on that river.  I just
wished I chould have bought it home to put in my tank with the other natives
I had at the time.
                                               Rich Boyd
----- Original Message -----
From: "robert a rice" <robertrice at juno_com>
To: <Nativefishconservancy at yahoogroups_com>; <nfc at actwin_com>;
<AiredaleII at aol_com>
Sent: Tuesday, November 20, 2001 8:03 PM
Subject: NFC: River runs Free

> [NOTE: the following is from a Web posting by the International Rivers
> Network -- Rebuffoni]
> ----------------------------------------------------
> Baraboo River officially "running free"
> In October 2001, history was made in Baraboo, Wisconsin. With the clank
> of
> backhoe against concrete, the Linen Mill Dam, the final dam on the
> Baraboo
> River, was dismantled, restoring the entire Baraboo River, all 115 miles
> of
> it, to free-flowing condition. The Baraboo River is now officially the
> longest mainstem of a river returned to free-flowing through dam removal
> in
> American history. There is a lot to celebrate in this achievement. The
> Baraboo River Restoration was a six-year campaign involving a vast number
> stakeholders including the City of Baraboo, the Wisconsin Department of
> Natural Resources, River Alliance of Wisconsin, the US Fish and Wildlife
> Service, Sand County Foundation and other agencies and groups who worked
> tirelessly to purchase and remove the final four dams on the river. It is
> being held as a model of dam removal where everyone wins and all parties,
> local, state and federal, play an important role in the process. "This
> was
> a long time in coming and is a tribute to all of the hard work of many
> partners," said River Alliance of Wisconsin executive director Todd Ambs.
> "The free-flowing Baraboo River is rapidly healing itself proving what we
> have often said  if you remove the dams, the fish will come. Selective
> dam
> removal is one of the best tools we have for restoring the health of
> rivers
> throughout Wisconsin." Changes have come indeed, with documented
> increases
> in fish diversity from 11 to 26 species and larger populations of darters
> and smallmouth bass upstream of the dams. Wisconsin leads the country in
> dam removal, with 100 deteriorating structures taken down in the last 35
> years.
> For more information, visit the River Alliance of Wisconsin at
> http://www.wisconsinrivers.org. E-mail River Alliance at
> wisrivers at wisconsinrivers_org, or contact their Small Dams Program
> Manager,
> Helen Sarakinos, at 608.257.2424.
> (Sandin, Jo, "After 150 years, dams no longer interrupt Baraboo River,"
> Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 23 October 2001.)
> ---------------------------------------------------------
> Fish ladders bring new life to streams in Iowa
> Gary Siegwarth sees the future in the idea of fish ladders. The
> Department
> of Natural Resources fisheries biologist wants people to know how they
> can
> revitalize dozens of Iowa streams and the aquatic species that are often
> missing from them. At Quasqueton in Buchanan County, a flooded 'stairway'
> ascends the west bank of the Wapsipinicon River adjacent to the old dam.
> The just completed fish ladder links upstream and downstream stretches of
> the Wapsi. At the top, it links with a culvert, directing water from the
> upstream side down the cobbled platforms. "We have a set of riffle pools
> that the fish use," Siegwarth points out. "They can use a quick burst of
> speed to get up the fast moving water, then rest in the pool before
> 'stairstepping' the rapids into succeeding pools." "Fish migrate for
> three
> reasons: for spawning, for feed purposes and for overwinter habitat,"
> explains Siegwarth.  Of the three urges, it is the overwintering instinct
> that is critical. "From our radio telemetry data, we see mass
> concentrations of game species overwintering in very specific kinds of
> deep
> water habitat," stresses Siegwarth. "If they can't migrate to these
> areas,
> there is a great deal of mortality. Just having water doesn't necessarily
> guarantee good habitat." That's because fish have to utilize the limited
> downstream wintering areas. Any good angler will tell you that at certain
> times of the year, the fishing just below a dam is excellent. Often, that
> is because fish are stacked up, trying to get upstream through an
> unyielding dam.
> (Wilkinson, Joe, "Fish ladders bring new life to streams," The Associated
> Press State & Local Wire, 11 October 2001.)
> Robert Rice
> NFC president
> www.nativefish.org
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