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Bob Ociari of the DEP stocks the River with brown troutUntil recently, the very idea of the Still River supporting a healthy population of fish was preposterous. In fact, most people from the area still harbor the incorrect notion that the River is a “dead zone," devoid of aquatic life.

There are some recent studies that provide documentation of the biological comeback of the River :

In 1991, the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Fisheries Unit conducted a survey of the River just upstream and downstream of the confluence of Limekiln Brook in Commerce Park (our project site). The 1991 survey found an absence of fish in the River, except for a few suckers. This is indicative of stressed water quality. It should be noted that the 1991 survey occurred prior to the upgrading of the Danbury Sewage Treatment Plant, so it can be considered “baseline” (i.e., preliminary to the improvements to the River).

  • In 1997, the DEP Fisheries Unit returned to the same site for a fish survey. The 1997 survey occurred subsequent to the upgrade to the Sewage Treatment Plant, which dramatically reduced pollutant loadings of ammonia and oxygen demand. The 1997 survey, in contrast to the study done in 1991, discovered a vast diversity of finfish, including darters, shiners and pickerel - species that are limited to high water quality. If you'd like to view the DEP’s 1997 finfish survey of the Still River, e-mail us with your address and we'd be glad to send you a copy.

  • In 1998, DEP returned to the same site and discovered a further increase in the abundance and diversity of fish. The 1998 survey discovered large mouth bass in the river.

mmedia3.gif (1136 bytes)Click here to view a video of Jack Kozuchowski detailing the improved water quality in the River (1.3M - 15 sec.).

The presence of fish in the Still River is an exciting measure of proof that the River has come back to life!

(Photo credit - Bob East III, Danbury News-Times.  From an article on the Still dated March 4, 2000)

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Last update:  April 19, 2001 4:35 PM