On May 21 Jarvis Middle School students traveled a few miles up the Ilion Gorge to release the trout raised through the Trout in the Classroom program into Steele’s Creek.
Several classes took part in the Trout in the Classroom program during the school year raising the fingerling trout from eggs. In November they received Brook Trout eggs which were kept within a nesting basket inside a specially built 50+gallon tank in Ms. DeRocco’s room. Students in her seventh grade Enrichment and Science classes took great care of the baby trout as they hatched and moved through the different stages of their lives.
Students preformed tests on the water content making sure that pH, ammonia, and nitrate levels were all within range. They fed the fish and changed out the water as needed; many times bringing buckets of water outdoors to chill to the needed temperature of 55 degrees. Mrs. Scharett’s fifth grade classes also looked after the young trout, keeping journals of their development. By May the fish were ready to be released into the wild.
Before traveling to the Ilion Gorge to release the trout, students were given a presentation by Mr. Joe Alberico and Mr. Greg Savas from the Trout in the Classroom program. Students were instructed on three types of flies that are a favorite food of the trout and how to identify the different phases of development for those flies. While along the creek side, students overturned rocks and looked along the shore, finding several of the fly larva they had just learned about as well as one unsuspecting crayfish. In all, over 70 fish were release, many lessons were learned and several memories were made. The science teachers hope to continue the program again next year.