Alewife Committee

The Alewife Committee was formed in 2015 in response to the DMR’s 2011 suspension of alewife fishing rights in Penobscot. The Committee’s duties include organizing alewife counts and monitoring their runs.

  • Bailey Bowden, Chair
  • Toby Wardwell
  • David Wardwell
  • Ed Wardwell
The Committee’s duties include collecting all biological data, including the number of fish entering the pond, as required by State and Federal authorities.  This data is used to determine if the alewife run can be harvested in a sustainable manner.
Alewives are an important component of the food web. From egg to adult, an alewife is always something’s lunch. The Passamaquoddy word for alewife means “fish that feeds all”.  Scientists believe that removing dams on our major rivers will allow bait fish, like alewives, to multiply which will provide the food base needed to restore cod and haddock to the Gulf of Maine.                                                               Merganser and alewives
The Maine Coast Heritage Trust was the key sponsor responsible for the recent fish passage improvements at Pierce’s and Wight’s Ponds.  The Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries has provided marine biologists and policy experts that convinced the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to approve a change to the Maine Department of Marine Resources RIver Herring Management Plan which now allows the town to have a limited commercial harvest of alewives.
Sometimes we see alewives that appear to be in trouble or cannot make their way up the brook. Please do not move any rocks in the brook to alter the water flow. The Alewife Committee monitors Winslow Stream and Mill Creek almost daily. If you believe there is a problem or would like to volunteer with managing the alewife runs in Penobscot, please contact Bailey Bowden at 326-8524.