Students raise and release catfish

Meyersdale Area School District  |  Posted on

Students at Meyersdale Area High School recently completed a special project in conjunction with the PA Fish and Boat Commission and the Salisbury-Elk Lick Hunting Club.

Students at Meyersdale Area High School (MAHS) have become “reel” experts through a special project with the Fish and Boat Commission and the Salisbury-Elk Lick Hunting Club.

After months of dutifully caring for more than 150 channel catfish, students in Mrs. Doreen Jamison’s Natural Resource Management Class were able to set their wards swim free on May 10.

With the assistance and planning of the Fish Commission and Salisbury-Elk Lick Hunting Club, along with Don Anderson, students accepted delivery of the catfish in October. Jamison said students were excited to participate in this program and took their fish-rearing responsibilities very seriously over the past seven months to ensure the greatest possible yield for release earlier this month. Students fed the fish daily and tested the water conditions several times throughout the week, to monitor ph, nitrite, nitrate and ammonia levels. Regular maintenance also included cleaning the tank thoroughly and ensuring equipment is working properly at all times.

“We released 153 catfish from our fish nursery here at the school and 490 fish total from the three county schools that raise the fish, Meyersdale, Rockwood and Berlin,” Jamison explained. “We released them into Donegal Lake which recently finished a lake restoration project similar to the restoration occuring at Somerset Lake.”

The following students were able to participate in the May 10 release: Brayden VanBogelen, Jesse Miller, Nick Fleissner, Tyler Holbrook, Lars Murray, Sage Logsdon and Maddie Engle.

Jamison said the benefits of this program are far-reaching and extend far beyond the walls of MAHS. This project benefits both the students involved and the community as their hard work resulted in fully-stocked waterways for all area residents to enjoy. Jamison is confident the lessons and skills learned through this project will serve students for years to come.