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Pembroke: Pennamaquan River Walk

Fred & Linda Gralenski

This easy hike will focus on the alewife, Alosa pseudoharengus, an anadromous fish that migrates up rivers about this time of year to spawn in lakes.

The fisheries managers, both state and federal, are taking a closer look at the aspect of rivers and streams being nurseries for the Gulf of Maine; in 2016 the St. Croix River was opened to spawning anadromous fish after an 18-year closure.

We should see Bald Eagle, Osprey and other birds feeding on the migrating alewives; and although river herring don’t make spectacular leaps like salmon, they can negotiate some very fast water, and their capabilities are impressive.

We will discuss the life cycle of diadromous fish, and
how they can survive in both salt and fresh water, their impact (both real and imagined) on freshwater lakes, and their importance as forage for birds, mammals, and other fish. We will net a few alewives and show their interesting anatomy as plankton feeders, and their use as nutrition for soils, lobsters, and people.

This event includes a small amount of driving around the river and the lake.

Meet in Pembroke on US 1 just north of Little Falls Rd. Park in the parking lot that is next to the falls and the (closed) Crossroads Restaurant. No restrooms.