Brook trout survey volunteers needed

Back in 2011 I first told you about an ambitious cooperative project that sought anglers to survey (read that: fish, and keep notes) a number of remote ponds.

Maine Audubon teamed up with Trout Unlimited and the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife in that effort, during which anglers trekked into previously unsurveyed ponds, trying to determine if brook trout lived in those waters.

Well, it’s that time of year again: Folks are starting to fish, and Maine Audubon and its partners are again looking for help from avid anglers in the third year of the Brook Trout Pond Survey project.

This year’s efforts will concentrate on ponds in western and northern Maine, with a goal of surveying many of the 307 ponds that stretch from Rangeley to Caribou.

In 2012, the second year of the study, 66 anglers contributed almost 1,200 volunteer hours while surveying 66 ponds off an original list of 372 waters, according to a Maine Audubon press release.

“Identifying the lakes and ponds with native brook trout will greatly assist [the DIF&W] in planning our conservation management strategies over the next several decades,” Merry Gallagher of the DIF&W said in the release. “The success of this project entirely dependent on the data collected by volunteer anglers,”

If you’re interested in taking part in this year’s project, surveys can be completed any time before Sept. 30. One of the project partners will provide volunteers with maps, data sheets and instructions on how the surveys should be conducted. To sign up, contact Emily Bastian at 781-6180, extension 207, or email her at

John Holyoke

About John Holyoke

John Holyoke has been enjoying himself in Maine's great outdoors since he was a kid. Today, he's the Outdoors editor for the BDN, a job that allows him to meet up with Maine outdoors enthusiasts in their natural habitat. The stories he gathers provide fodder for his columns, and this blog.