Submitted by Bob Gregorski with information from Tim Wildman & Tim Barry DEEP Fisheries.

Spring 2015 Fish Counts — Kinneytown Fishladder
The Kinneytown Fishladder is located on the Naugatuck River at the Kinneytown Dam in Seymour, CT. This spring the Fishway opened on April 6 and closed June 26. All the fish passing through the viewing window are recorded on video. DEEP Fisheries staff then view and record what passed. Here is the data for the 323 fish that swam to the upper river this spring:
Alewife 1, Striped bass 3, Sea lamprey 136, Broodstock Atlantic Salmon 8, Brown trout 7, Brook trout 2, White sucker 98, Common carp 8, White catfish 2, Smallmouth bass 57 and Walleye 1.

The fish ladder has been in place at the Kinneytown Dam in Seymour since 1999. It’ usually in operation May through September. Historically, about 25 species of fish have been using it to migrate up and down the river. They include: The American shad, striped bass, white sucker, gizzard shad, sea-run brown trout, sea-run tiger trout, brown trout, brook trout, tiger trout, rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, common carp, Atlantic salmon surplus broodstock, blueback herring, alewife, sea lamprey, American eel, common carp, largemouth bass, sunfish, channel catfish and walleye. A detailed list of have used it can be found on the Trout Unlimited website www.tunaugpomp.org under Fishladder presented on the HOME PAGE.

It is not known how many of these fish proceeded up river via the fish passage way on the Tinque Dam. The by-pass over the falls at the Tinque Dam in Seymour was completed in 2014. Fish migrating upriver from the Kinneytown Fishladder can ascend over the Tinque Dam/Falls about one mile upriver via a channel.

Shad and Herring Stocked
In the spring of 2015, the DEEP Fisheries Division stocked Alewife and American Shad to the Naugatuck River at the Riverbend Park in Beacon Falls. The 1,000 Alewife came from Brides Pond ( Old Lyme)163 American Shad from Holyoke, MA Fishlift. The stocking of shad and river herring stocking in the Naugatuck River has continued since 1996 and 2002 respectively.

Broodstock Atlantic Salmon
According to Tim Barry, Supervising Fisheries Biologist DEEP, Western HQ, the Broodstock Atlantic Salmon fishing program is still on course. “The total numbers were reduced somewhat when the Feds. pulled out of the salmon culture hatchery up in White River Jct. in Vermont (keep in mind that these were mostly smaller 1 and 2 year old excess broodstock that we tried to stock earlier). Our numbers from Kensington continue to remain consistent. We plan to proceed as usual with a stocking in October (with surplus 2+ yr old fish) and then a small number of unripe of the 3 and 4 year old fish (the potential spawners) in early Nov. Then the large slug of spent broodstcok (4 year olds) in early to mid-Dec. This is what we have done normally.”

KINNEYTOWN SPRING FISH COUNTS -- Fishway Opened 4/19/2013 and Fishway Closed 7/2/2013. Tim Wildman of the DEEP Fisheries reported the Kinneytown Fish Passage data. The passage way/ladder is located on the Naugatuck River in Seymour.

American Shad 14, Alewife 70, Blueback 0, Gizzard shad 68, Sea-run brown trout 2, Striped bass 2, Atlantic salmon 8, Sea lamprey 130, American eel 0, Brown trout 14, Brook trout 0, Rainbow trout 13, White sucker 463, Common carp 11, White catfish 0, Brown bullhead 0, Channel catfish 0, Redbreast 0, Pumpkinseed 0, Bluegill 0, Black crappie 0, Rock bass 0, Smallmouth 62, Largemouth 0, Yellow perch 0 and Walleye 0 --Total 857

“Best Report”-- Kinneytown Fishway

“A river without fish is not much of an ecosystem – it is like a drainage ditch. But after all the abuse we have heaped upon the Naugatuck River, that ecosystem is now rapidly recovering. I hope that when we look back years from now we can see that 2012 was the year that the American shad and river herring began the long road to restoration in earnest. I’m sure there will still be good years and bad years, but with this big jump in returns and work about to begin on the Tingue Dam fishway, I hope that the trend is mostly in an upward direction in the coming years.” said Steve Gephard—DEEP Supervising Fisheries Biologist (Diadromous Fisheries Program).

It has been long time coming. The first year American shad were stocked in the Naugatuck River was in 1996 and 2002 was the first year alewife were stocked. This spring 59 American shad and 20 alewives passed through the Kinneytown Fishway passage. Not great numbers, but hopefully the start of a positive trend. The first American shad passed Kinneytown Fishway was in 2002. The first alewife passed in 2001. Since this preceded the stocking effort, these alewife that passed the fishway were part of the ‘remnant run’ to the river.

The following are the total list for the Kinneytown Fishway passage numbers for Spring 2012: American shad (59), Alewife (28), Sea-run brown trout (21), Sea lamprey (35), Striped bass (7), Gizzard shad (36), Broodstock salmon (4), Smallmouth bass (173), Brown trout (122), Rainbow trout (2), White sucker (572), Common carp (31), Unidentified sunfish (2) and Unidentified catfish (1).

Note: Hundreds of juvenile clupeids (shad or alewives) were observed going downstream through the fishway at the end of the season; something that hadn’t seen in years past.

“The numbers of American shad and river herring that passed the Kinneytown Fishway in the years following those ‘founding fish’ documented above remained very low until just this year. Biologists do not know for sure what factors contributed to the improvement that were seen this year, but they believe that better sea survival (from when the fish first emigrated from freshwater as juveniles up until they came back as mature adults) must have played an important part in this year’s runs.” Reported Tim Wildman, Fisheries Biologist (Diadromous Fisheries) Inland Fisheries Division -Bureau of Natural Resources

It appears likely that the Connecticut River run of American shad experienced the same sort of improvement. This improvement however was not seen across their range (Florida to Maine), and in fact, some rivers actually saw fewer fish return this year. Biologists will continue their efforts to restore anadromous fish to the Naugatuck River, which includes the stocking of both American shad and alewife. They hope that it is the beginning of a positive trend.

Note: The stocking of shad and river herring stocking in the Naugatuck River has continued since 1996 and 2002 respectively. The 2012 spring stocking were:

American Shad (150) and Alewife (river herring) 500. All stocking took place at the Riverbend Park in Beacon Falls.

Kinneytown Fishway Report Seymour, CT & Stocking of Sea run Trout, American Shad and Alewife in the Naugatuck River

Reported by Timothy Wildman—DEEP Fisheries Division

The total passage for the year, 2011.




American shad




Atlantic salmon


American eel


Blueback herring


Gizzard shad


Sea lamprey


Sea-run brown trout


Striped bass


Brook trout


Brown trout


Common carp




Smallmouth bass




Channel catfish


White sucker


Tiger trout




2011 Stocking of Sea run Trout, Alewife and American Shad Programs Stocking in the Naugatuck River-- 500 brown trout and 500 tiger trout downstream of K’town Dam (Riverside Drive in Ansonia).

156 American shad and 500 alewife into the Naugatuck River at the Riverbend Park on Nancy Avenue in Beacon Falls.