Dam notching gives 'Housey' trout access to more coldwater habitat

Notching a dam on Macedonia Brook in Connecticut has opened up an additional 2 miles of quality coldwater habitat for trout in the Housatonic River watershed.

After years of planning, the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, the Housatonic Valley Association and Trout Unlimited removed parts of the old concrete dam on the Housatonic tributary on Aug. 27 and 28.

The 2-foot by 2-foot notch in the concrete was removed by DEEP’s Diadromous Fisheries and Habitat Conservation Unit based out of Old Lyme, led by Steve Gephard, supervising fisheries biologist.

The experienced crew had rented jackhammers and a concrete saw to chip away at the dam.

After two days of grueling work they finally reached a point of progress where they felt confident fish could travel upstream through the notch to escape warm summertime river temperatures of the Housatonic.

Macedonia Brook is managed by DEEP as a Wild Trout Management Area.

Funding for the project was provided by Trout Unlimited’s Cold Water Conservation Fund.

By Mark Taylor. A native of rural southern Oregon, Mark Taylor has lived in Virginia since serving a stint as a ship-based naval officer in Norfolk. He joined the TU staff in 2014 after a 20-year run as a newspaper journalist, the final 16 as the outdoors editor of the Roanoke Times. A graduate of Northwestern University, he lives in Roanoke with his wife and, when they're home from college, his twin daughters.