On January 11, Supervisor Ed Romaine (left) and Councilman Dan Panico (right) joined Town of Brookhaven Environmental Analyst, Alan Duckworth (center), at the construction site of the Forge Road Dam fish ladder in Calverton.
Once it is completed, the fish ladder will connect the Peconic River to the Peconic Lake and will restore an additional two miles and 120 acres of aquatic habitat for diadromous fish like River Herring and American Eel. Diadromous fishes describe species that spend part of their lives in freshwater and part in saltwater. They are an important food source for birds, other fish and marine mammals, and their migration up and down rivers transports a huge amount of energy into and out of aquatic ecosystems. The fish ladder will allow fish to bypass the dam and migrate into the Peconic Lake for the first time in over 100 years.
Fish migrating upriver will swim first through an Alaskan Steep-pass, a prefabricated, modular style of Denil fish ladder originally developed for use in remote locales. It brings the fish to a horizontal pipe under the road and into the lake. The Forge Road Dam fish ladder project is co-funded by the Town of Brookhaven and NYSDEC and will be finished before River Herring run upriver in the Spring of 2023.