Take off the fishing hat


To the Editor:

In the Sept. 3 fishing column (“Success on the large scale takes action on a small scale”), editor Nelson Sigelman once again wrote advocating for removal of the dam that created the historic Mill Pond to facilitate the movement of certain fish species up and down the Mill Brook.

What he never set forth in his advocacy campaign is what are the tradeoffs of the removal. What about the other species that inhabit the Mill Pond and its surrounding wetlands? What about the significance of the Mill Pond as the original commercial engine of the Town of West Tisbury? What about its aesthetic and recreational value to residents and visitors of the Island?

For nearly 200 years the fish have been swimming back and forth from Chilmark to the Tisbury Great Pond. Why has their movement become a problem in recent years? What are the causes that have slowed down that fish movement? Why is the temperature in the Mill Pond suddenly rising so much? Could it be that the pond has become too shallow? Could it be that fish access to the Tisbury Pond has been affected by the inadequate openings to the sea?

As editor, I encourage Mr. Sigelman to take off his fisherman’s hat for a moment and give some thought to these considerations.

Beatrice Nessen

West Tisbury