NOAA 2003-R947
Contact: Aja Sae-Kung
NOAA News Releases 2003
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NOAA, the Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, has awarded $25,000 to the Branford Land Trust to construct a fishway on Queach Brook in Branford, Conn.

The fishway, funded through the Community-based Restoration Program within the National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries), will allow river herring access to more than 75 acres of spawning and nursery habitat. Additional project partners include the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (CTDEP), and the Town of Branford. The fishway is scheduled to be completed in summer 2004.

The Supply Pond Dam, located approximately four miles from Long Island Sound and originally constructed in the late 1800’s, prevents fish passage on Queach Brook, a tributary of the Branford River. There are no other dams or obstructions to fish passage above the dam, and the watershed has not been substantially altered from its natural state. A fishway at the dam will allow fish access to the Supply Ponds, Cedar Lake and Lindsley Lake.

“This project will allow river herring to access a significant amount of relatively undisturbed habitat, and is expected to improve herring populations in Long Island Sound,“ said Patricia Kurkul, NOAA Fisheries regional administrator for the Northeast Region. “We are pleased to support the efforts of the Branford Land Trust and the project partners to implement this restoration project.”

The project will include the installation of a steepass fishway at the dam and reconstruction of the stream channel to provide the appropriate gradient and velocity for fish passage. In addition to the fishway, plans include educational signs and a public viewing area.

“The Branford Land Trust is delighted to receive the $25,000 grant from the NOAA Community-based Restoration Program for building a fishway on the Supply Pond Dam. This fishway will allow tens of thousands of alewives and other migratory fish to spawn in the Supply Ponds and even Lindsley Lake and Cedar Pond,” said Tom Cleveland, vice chairman of the Branford Fishway Project.

The Branford Land Trust and one of its committees, the Branford River Project, are currently applying for the permits needed to install the fishway, possibly during the Summer or Fall of 2004.

The Community-based Restoration Program (CRP), a financial and technical assistance program within the NOAA Fisheries Office of Habitat Conservation, promotes strong partnerships at the national, regional and local level to fund grassroots, community-based activities. The NOAA-funded projects provide strong on-the-ground habitat restoration components that offer educational and social benefits for people and their communities in addition to long-term ecological benefits for fishery resources.
More information about the CRP can be found at:

In fiscal year 2003, NOAA has awarded more than 618 grants totalling $303 million to members of the academic, scientific and business communities to assist the agency in fulfilling its mission to study the Earth’s natural systems in order to predict environmental change, manage ocean resources, protect life and property and provide decision makers with reliable scientific information. NOAA goals and programs reflect a commitment to these basic responsibilities of science and service to the nation for 33 years.

The Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources. To learn more about NOAA, please visit