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Fish Friends Thrive With Help Of Volunteers

by the Fish Site Editor
22 March 2011, at 12:00am

CANADA - The Atlantic Salmon Federation (ASF) and a team of loyal volunteers will launch the 2011 Fish Friends education programme on March 22, at 10:30 am at St. Gerards School in Corner Brook.

Hundreds of volunteers, throughout the range of wild Atlantic salmon are helping ASF deliver the time-tested, much acclaimed Fish Friends programme to almost 700 elementary classrooms this year throughout Eastern North America. Students at Newfoundland and Labrador’s 65 participating schools are eagerly awaiting their eyed salmon eggs.

Students will rear these eggs in classroom incubation units as they learn about wild Atlantic salmon, their amazing life cycle and struggles, their social, cultural, and economic significance, and the importance of protecting them and the environments in which they live. The children will watch the eggs hatch, feed the small fish, and maintain and clean the aquariums for about 10 weeks. Once they reach the fry stage, the students will release them into local streams to continue their life cycle in the wild.

Employees from Newfoundland Power, a corporate sponsor of the Fish Friends Program in Newfoundland and Labrador, and volunteers from the Salmonid Council of Newfoundland and Labrador (SCNL), the Freshwater Resource Center, Salmon Preservation Association for the Waters of Newfoundland (SPAWN), Salmonid Association of Eastern Newfoundland (SAEN), Environmental Resources Management Association (ERMA), will help Don Ivany, ASF’s Director of Regional Programs for NL, deliver the eggs.

Dave Lewis, Environmental Coordinator, Newfoundland Power says, “We are very pleased to provide both financial and hands-on support to the Fish Friends programme for the fourteenth consecutive year. The Fish Friends programme complements Newfoundland Power’s employee-driven Environmental Commitment program and is closely tied to our Company’s focus on education, youth and the environment. Not only does this programme provide students with a unique learning opportunity, it also teaches the importance of maintaining sustainable fish populations for present and future generations.”

“We are very thankful to our volunteers and especially to Newfoundland Power”, said Mr Ivany. Without their continued support and devotion to the Fish Friends Programme, we wouldn’t be able to deliver it to the nearly 2000 elementary students throughout the province who participate every year. “These volunteers help deliver eggs, visit classrooms, and coordinate all the fry releases in the springtime”.

The Atlantic Salmon Federation is dedicated to the conservation, protection and restoration of wild Atlantic salmon and the ecosystems on which their well being and survival depend. ASF has a network of seven regional councils (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Maine and Western New England). The regional councils cover the freshwater range of the Atlantic salmon in Canada and the United States.

the Fish Site Editor

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