The Palermo Fish Hatchery sits along the banks of the Sheepscott River. Inside its buildings, small brown and brook trout are raised to be released in various lakes and rivers around Maine in the spring and fall when water temperatures are still cool. The fish raised here will never have a chance to swim in the river just outside the walls of the place where they're raised because this portion of the Sheepscott River is now a natural reproduction area for wild fish. The catch and release rule along this this stretch of water has led to healthy populations of fish for the last seven years.
Most of the fish caught along the Upper Sheepscott are small brook trout between 5 and 7 inches. Despite their size they fight like a swordfish as you reel them in. In a deep pool just below the bridge to the fish hatchery, however, large brown trout lie deep in the shadows. With the right fly and the perfect cast, you might be lucky enough to hold something wild before letting it slip back into the darkness.
text, photo, and fish by Jonathan Ives
207 Paintings post everyish Tuesday around 5:30am EST on both The Maine and jessicaleeives.com. Save thirty percent on any 4x4 inch oil on panel painting by making your purchase within the first week of its posting. Instead of $300 pay just $207, a number which just happens to be the Maine state area code.
Tuesday 207 Paintings are exclusive to The Maine. They depict the land, the light and the people that make this state a state of wonder. Jessica is editor of The Maine and writes occasionally as The Outsider.