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Getting Schooled on the Coonamessett

PIT-tagged Easter eggs help these Falmouth, MA 4th graders simulate river herring migration on the Coonamessett River as part of the Coonamessett River Trust's environmental education outreach program.

Falmouth 4th graders watch their eggs drift over our PIT-tag antenna and wait for the 'beep' that announces completion of a successful spawning migration.

Declines in river herring numbers over the years sparks concern for population persistence in New England coastal streams. Monitoring river herring using PIT-tags helps identify and target areas for restoration in order to improve timely and efficient spawning behavior.

Remnants from cranberry bog activities, such as the middle dike culvert (below) interfere with herring movement from the sea to freshwater spawning locations. Cranberry bog restoration, including creation of river bends and introduction of large woody debris, helps restore natural ecological processes that improve biodiversity, aid fish passage, and promote a self-sustaining ecosystem.

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