Mill Pond: a town and Island asset


To the Editor:

The Letter to the Editor in the January  23 edition of The Times headlined, “Restore Mill Pond’s Ancient Natural Beauty” is naïve in several of its assumptions. It assumes that a stream created by the removal of the dam would increase the fish population. This is an assumption that will require verification, according to the state  Division of Marine Fisheries. Funding will be required to carry out such work.

The writer does not acknowledge that there are simpler means of increasing the fish movement, such as a fish ladder, like the one one being installed this year.

The writer fails to address the town’s dependence on water from the Mill Pond for firefighting. How will that loss be remedied and compensated for?

Assuming a stream would be more beautiful than the Mill Pond, a subject for poets, artists, and photographers alike, is also unrealistic. Just one look at the Mill Brook from Scotchman’s Lane, overgrown and hardly visible or accessible, is a preview of a brook substitute for the Mill Pond. Vigilant town maintenance of the banks would be necessary, and that would cost taxpayers.

The Mill Pond is home to much wildlife – fish, ducks, birds, otters, eels, and turtles to name a few. A deeper pond will benefit the fish and other aquatic creatures. It is a beautiful place. It is a town asset, as well as an Island icon. Shouldn’t townsfolk continue their heritage of maintaining the pond, which was gifted to them on the condition that they care for it?

Beatrice Nessen

West Tisbury