Friday November 10, 2023

Monterey Weekly

Just past 9am on a mid-October weekday, a small team of employees from the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District begin staging equipment along a stretch of the Carmel River, just upstream of the district’s Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility.

The team strings two nets across the river about 300 feet apart, and then two groups of three wade into the river and begin working their way upstream. One member of each group holds an electrofisher, which stuns the steelhead out of the nooks and crannies they like to hang out in. They are trailed by another member carrying a net to scoop up the stunned fish, who in turn is being trailed by someone carrying a bucket to hold the captured fish.

Once a bucket starts to fill up, it’s traded out and brought to a small folding table set on the bank near the upstream net. Seated at the table is Cory Hamilton, one of the district’s three fisheries biologists, who – one by one – starts pulling the fish out of the bucket.

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