On Monday, October 5, 2015, GDF-Suez FirstLight Power drained the Turners Falls Power Canal for dredging in its annual “drawdown.” For many months out of the year all of the Connecticut River’s migratory and resident fish are forced into the power canal while the 2-1/2 miles below Turners Falls Dam is left virtually empty.This happens annually, and the related mortality has yet to be fully studied, even though the USGS Silvio O. Conte Anadromous Fish Research Center overlooks the TF Power Canal.

These few photos below are just a tiny sample of a 20-minute walk through a small segment of the canal at 7:00 a.m. on the day the canal drained. Thousands of fish lay struggling, stranded, and dead in the drying pools.Click on photos to enlarge.

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