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All In for Alewife / Seeqanamâhs!

River herring are foundational to both culture and ecology here in the Mystic River Watershed. They are the reason and the map for the Osprey migration. Eagles, herons, and egrets love them, too.

They are food for riverine mammals like otters (and humans!).

They are the middle of the food chain for ocean species too numerous to count. "Everybody eats herring," said one fisherman recently.

Mike Thomas, Mashantucket Tribal Nation Knowledge Keeper and Elder said, "at this time of year, the rivers looked like running silver." Seeqanamâhsak bring hope upstream on their journey to spawn. They are the embodiment of the energy of the sea.

Today, alewife populations have experienced a 99.7% drop in population from the mid-1990s.

They are "by-catch," the waste-fish caught and killed by the hundreds of thousands in giant trawlers' hunt for bigger fish. It doesn't have to be this way.

In Maine, because of Tribal and non-tribal citizens and recreational and small commercial fishing advocacy, there are both temporal and spatial limits (when and where certain types of trawling are allowed) that protect River Herring. The State of CT and federal agencies have invested millions in opening up passage for them to spawn. A recent Yale study showed that the by-catch alewife are coming from eastern Long Island Sound. They were born in and otherwise would be returning to our rivers and lakes.

We can make a difference when we act together. Here's How:

Join our "Alewife Counts" Count. We need the data! They're on their way! Sign Up Here.

April 10: Join us to draft templates for written testimony and craft oral testimony on Wednesday, April 10 (location TBD), from 6-8 pm.

APRIL 17: Mystic HILTON, 6-8 for Public Comment to NE Fisheries Management Council. They can establish the time and place closures to protect our River herring, without whom our ecosystems will eventually collapse.

April 20: Earth Expo at Groton Public Library, visit our All In for Alewife booth and sign on to written testimony.

April 29: deadline for submitting written testimony

May 18 or 19: Join us in an All In for Alewife Celebration of Life, Hope, and all the volunteeers who have contributed to saving Seeqanamâhs! run, walk, paddle, picnic on Long Pond and Lantern Hill Pond.

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