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The Seal Cove Pond Fishways Project

The effort to reconnect Tremont’s Seal Cove and Seal Cove Pond and improve fish passage is underway!

Seal Cove is one of a few public waterfront sites on the “Quietside” of Mount Desert Island. A town park provides access to the water and a picnic area. Visitors can enjoy the stillness of an early morning fog, the splendor of the setting sun, and take in the sights and sounds of the local fishing industry.

Historically, the connection between Seal Cove and nearby Seal Cove Pond was compromised by dams. Of greatest concern is the way these barriers (even the one with a fish ladder) prevented alewives from reaching Seal Cove Pond to spawn.

In 2017, we began working with the Town of Tremont, Acadia National Park, and other partners to improve fish passage at two key locations along Seal Cove Brook—one at the current dam at Seal Cove Pond and the second downstream at the site of a former dam. Construction of these fish was began in July of 2022 and was completed as of September 2022 (pictured at the top of the page). 

Alewives are food for mammals, birds, and other fish. They are vital to the health of the pond and the ocean. They are also a valuable source of bait. Diminishing ale­wife populations directly impact commer­cial fisheries and local livelihoods.

This project was a collaboration between Maine Coast Heritage Trust, the Town of Tremont, and a host of supporting organizations—including Acadia National Park, as well as a handful supportive landowners. 

If you love MDI and the coast of Maine, and care about the natural resources on which healthy environments and com­munities depend, please consider supporting this effort. 

Your gift will:

  • Construct nature-like fishways at two key sites on Seal Cove Brook
  • Bring back 60,000 alewives to Seal Cove Pond each year
  • Improve the health of the Seal Cove Pond watershed
  • Contribute to the recovery of Gulf of Maine fisheries.

GIVE TODAY

For more information, contact

Nicky Blanchard
Director of Development

207-729-7366

Misha Mytar
Senior Project Manager, MDI

207-244-5100

Project details

Location: Tremont, Hancock County
Project size: 2 fishway sites
Project Cost: $300,000

Fundraising will cover infrastructure invest­ments and MCHT operational support.


Progress updates:

July 15, 2022: Construction of two nature-like fishways has begun and will continue through August.

May 2022: MCHT hosted an event about the design and construction plans for two nature-like fishways to be built this summer at the Seal Cove Pond dam and downstream at the site of a former dam. If you are interested but were not able to make it there is a Zoom recording available on the Town YouTube channel. 

March 2022: Mount Desert Islander publishes a story about the project

September 2021: Mount Desert Islander publishes a story about the project

July 2021: MCHT publishes story about the project.

June 2021: The Maine Islander publishes a story about the partnership project.