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'RECOVERING' STRIPED BASS POPULATION GETS BOOST FROM DELMARVA POWER HATCHERY

 'RECOVERING' STRIPED BASS POPULATION
 GETS BOOST FROM DELMARVA POWER HATCHERY
 WILMINGTON, Del., Aug. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Once protected by the State because of a low population, the Delaware River Striped Bass is receiving a healthy boost in numbers this week from a fish hatchery at Delmarva Power's Edge Moor Power Plant.
 Some 70,000 Striped Bass (Rockfish), averaging about 3 to 5 inches in length, are being released into the Delaware River from a hatchery built by about 50 Delmarva Power employees.
 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Department personnel are injecting each fish with a safe, coded wire for identification and tracking purposes. This tagging process allows researchers to distinguish Edge Moor hatchery- raised Rockfish from those born in the wild, and study fish survival rates in the Delaware River. The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control is assisting in the release of the fish into the Delaware River near Augustine Beach.
 Mature female and male Rockfish were netted from the Delaware River this spring. The fish were then spawned and raised in 30 tanks, ranging in size from 50 to 10,000 gallons.
 "The employees who worked on this project are to be congratulated for making it a success," said Mark Elliott, project engineer, Edge Moor. "It looks like the hatchery will help increase the Striped Bass population in the Delaware River."
 The Edge Moor hatchery is similar to a Rockfish brooding pond built on the grounds of the company's Vienna, Md., Power Plant in 1985. The Vienna hatchery has raised and released more than 105,000 Rockfish over the last seven years. Today, more than 20 percent of the Rockfish in the Nanticoke River were raised in the company's brooding pond, according to local ecological studies.
 Delmarva Power's interest in improving Striped Bass production began about 16 years ago when it funded research studies on the fish. A moratorium on fishing for Striped Bass was in effect in the late 1980s and early 90s because of the fish's dangerously dwindling population. The Striped Bass is now listed as a "recovering" species.
 Both the Edge Moor Power Plant and the Vienna Power Plant hatchery projects are part of the company's environmental stewardship program, which is designed to balance the company's obligation to provide reliable service to our customers while protecting and enhancing the environment of the Delmarva Peninsula.
 /delval/
 -0- 8/17/92
 /CONTACT: Wallace C. Judd Jr. of Delmarva Power, 302-429-3595/
 (DEW) CO: Delmarva Power and Light Company ST: Delaware IN: UTI SU:


MP-CC -- PH015 -- 0508 08/17/92 12:21 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 17, 1992
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