TOWNSEND — Brown trout abound in the Squannacook River now as the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife stocked the river late last week.
”We stock the river four times each year, with the spring being the first,” said Michael Huguenin, fish truck driver from the state agency, as he began to unload.
The newly-planted trout are each at least one foot long and at least one pound. The trucks that bring them to the river hold a minimum of 1,000 fish each.
”Sometimes we stock browns, rainbows or brook, it all depends on what we decide,” Huguenin said.
As the fish were being hauled out of the safety of the state truck and into the uncertainty in the river, fishermen Wendell Bearce and Norman Sweeney watched from the sidelines.
”I’ve had this dream since I was a kid, being here as the new fish go into the water,” Bearce said with his fishing rod in hand.
Sweeney said he had never fished the Squannacook before but saw the fish truck and decided to follow it.
”I figured they were coming here, so we both figured why not see where they go and how they unload. It’s a perfect spot to be in,” Sweeney said with a laugh.
As the fish hit the water, some of the trout stayed very still, while others took off upstream and down. Rachel Nichols, also with the division, had the job of putting the baskets into the water and making sure the fish appeared to be all right.
”It’s a fun job, but you sure do smell at the end of the day,” Nichols joked.