NEW YORK — New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos has announced that the tenth annual Great Hudson River Estuary Fish Count will take place at multiple sites along the banks of the Hudson River on Saturday, July 31.
“I encourage New Yorkers and visitors to get outdoors or go online and enjoy this opportunity to learn about the fish living in the Hudson River,” Commissioner Seggos said. “With sites from New York Harbor to Waterford, there are plenty of great spots to choose from to participate in the annual fish count close to home.”
The public is invited to join naturalists from the Capital Region to New York City to explore the variety of creatures usually hidden below the river’s surface. Fresh upriver and salty at New York City, the Hudson River’s estuary and watershed are home to more than 200 fish species, including several that migrate into the river from the Atlantic Ocean each spring to spawn. Eleven sites will offer in-person opportunities for the public and three will livestream the fish count on DEC’s Facebook page.
During the fish count, participating organizations encourage visitors to help collect fish using seine nets, minnow traps, or rods and reels. Seining involves pulling a 30-foot net through the water and checking out the fish, crabs, and other river-life caught in its mesh. Participants may watch from shore or jump into available waterproof waders and help pull in the net. The fish are released after everyone has a chance to see them up close.
Participating groups share their catch results by posting to the DEC Twitter feed with the hashtag #hudsonriverfishcount. Comparing notes builds understanding of the diversity of fishes and habitats in the Hudson, the vitality of the estuarine ecosystem in urban and rural settings, and the influence of salinity and tides. For more information, visit the Great Hudson River Estuary Fish Count page on the DEC’s website, and watch a clip about seining in the Hudson River on DEC’s YouTube Channel.
Peebles Island State Park in Waterford is the only participating site in Saratoga County. The Fish Count at this site will begin at 9 a.m. and will be livestreamed on the DEC Facebook page at 10:30 a.m. Peebles Island State Park is a DEC Region 4 Fishery.