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Tracking Trout on the Deerfield River

For the past two-plus years, TU’s Deerfield River Watershed Chapter members and community volunteers have been tracking the movements of 30 brown trout carrying surgically implanted radio transmitters.

Now, after putting thousands of miles on their cars to collect 24 million GPS data points, the chapter in northwestern Massachusetts is wrapping up an important phase of its ambitious study.

This 17-mile stretch of the 70-mile Deerfield River is controlled by Brookfield Power’s Fife Brook Dam and Bear Swamp Pump Storage Facilities hydro-electric operation. A well-known and popular trout fishery, it was recently selected as one of our Priority Waters—places around the country where TU can make the greatest contribution to the health, resiliency, and viability of trout and salmon fisheries.

The collected brown trout telemetry data are being analyzed by the chapter’s partners at the USGS Eastern Ecological Science Center, part of the Silvio O. Conte Research Laboratory in Turners Falls, Mass.

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