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NEW YORK'S DEPARTMENT of Environmental Conservation (DEC) says it will work with Trout Unlimited (TU) to develop a long-range wild-trout management plan for the Beaver Kill watershed. Implementation of the plan could include land purchases, more restoration of tributaries damaged after the 1996 floods, emergency stream closures during warm weather, and removal of berms built to prevent flooding of roads and private property.

The DEC says its long-term goal is to "maximize the capacity of the Beaver Kill to produce and sustain wild-trout populations and high-quality trout fishing opportunities."

The DEC plan, which will build upon TU's 1994-2000 Beaver Kill/Willowemoc (BeaMoc) Watershed Initiative, includes a five-year research and assessment study of the watershed. Extensive research has already been done in the area, but long-term work is needed, says Jock Conyngham, TU's director of watershed assessment. Since 1994, TU has spent roughly $500,000 for research, assessment, and stream restoration in the region. And the New York Department of Transportation has spent $5 million replacing paved culverts with crushed-stone culverts and stormwater impoundments that allow warm road runoff to seep into the ground rather then flow directly into the stream.

Conyngham says that during low summer flows, trout in the Beaver Kill must seek coidwater refuges because the river's wide, shallow sections become too war (89 degrees F. in some areas) for their survival. Trout in those refuges become easy targets for anglers, and although the fish may be released, many are lethally stressed by the fight in warm water. For information, contact Jock Conyngham, (207) 8469189.

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Title Annotation:Trout Unlimited and New York's Department of Environmental Conservation agree to protect wild-trout under Beaver Kill-Willowemoc Watershed Initiative
Publication:Fly Fisherman
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1U2NY
Date:Sep 1, 2000
Previous Article:STEELHEAD RECORD?

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