News, Wolcott

Student Science Project Releases Brook Trout Fingerlings

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courtesy OSSU Facebook page
A brook trout fingerling raised by Wolcott Elementary School’s fifth and sixth grade class being released into the Lamoille River on Thursday, May 23. The fish were raised by Sonya Shedd’s class as part of a program sponsored by Trout Unlimited.

WOLCOTT   – Fifth and Sixth grade students at Wolcott Elementary School were featured in a WCAX broadcast on Thursday, May 23, as they released brook trout fingerlings into the Lamoille River.

They raised the fish from eggs received through Vermont’s Fish and Wildlife Department as part of a “Trout in the Classroom” (TIC) program sponsored by Trout Unlimited.

This is the third year Sonya Shedd’s classes have participated in the program. She said on WCAX, “having that connection to something in the real world makes the science feel real to them. They’re very involved in the process of taking care of the fish, from testing the tank to cleaning the tank, to understanding how the tank and the natural environment are similar.”

“Releasing them in the river was fun, we got to test the water and look for other organisms in the river. All fish and animals deserve to be treated with the same respect that people do,” WCAX quoted student Jillian Herman as saying.

As part of their science investigations, students were excited to discover salamanders, stoneflies, dragonflies, crayfish and other water species. They then said their goodbyes and released the 78 trout fingerlings into their new home reports the OSSU Facebook page.

Principal Dennis Hill told WCAX, “This is a great way for kids who are interested in science and the outdoors, and ecology and the environment to really get a taste of what that looks like and hopefully provide them with some foundation for what they may choose to do in the future.”

Through the TIC program, students raise brook trout at their school, monitoring and supporting all stages of their development, before releasing them into a local stream. Students learn about early trout development and anatomy, habitat, water chemistry, life cycles and food.

They also explore larger themes involving streams and aquatic ecosystems, water quality, environmental issues and the impacts humans can have on aquatic resources.

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