Saco Salmon Restoration Alliance President Rick LaRiviere pulls out a tray of salmon fry in an incubator at the organization’s Biddeford hatchery.

Saco Salmon Restoration Alliance President Rick LaRiviere pulls out a tray of salmon fry in an incubator at the organization’s Biddeford hatchery.

BIDDEFORD — Saco Salmon Restoration Alliance President Rick LaRiviere pulled out a tray of countless tiny salmon fry out of an incubator at the group’s hatchery.

“These are my babies,” he said, as the tiny fish darted quickly around the tray.

The alliance, formerly known as the Saco River Salmon Club, was established in 1983 to restore and maintain a habitat and enable a self-sustaining run of Atlantic Salmon in the Saco River watershed. The volunteer organization works with federal and state agencies as well as other organizations.

Atlantic salmon are an endangered species in Maine, their once prominent population having been depleted by a combination of factors including historical overfishing, pollution and dams, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife website.

The alliance maintains a fish hatchery at 11 Marblehead Road, next to the public boat launch. It’s hosting an open house from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, and invites anyone interested to come for a free tour of the facility.

“So many people in the community don’t even know we exist,” said LaRiviere.

The hatchery has 400,000 salmon fry, and volunteers are busy moving them from the incubation equipment to the rearing room.

The group is looking for volunteers to assist in stocking the salmon fry in the Saco River Watershed in coming weeks. For more information about volunteering, call LaRiviere at (603) 915-0651.

Staff Writer Liz Gotthelf can be contacted at 282-1535, ext. 325 or [email protected]


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