Ames Pond Dam Removal and Fishway Construction, Monatiquot River, Massachusetts

Braintree, Massachusetts

Funded in FY2022 through the National Fish Habitat Partnership.

The former mill industry along the Monatiquot River impacted historic herring runs and disconnected species from their spawning grounds. The River’s Ames Pond Dam no longer serves its original purpose and is a barrier to fish passage. Additionally, a rail bridge constructed immediately downstream of Ames Pond Dam in the 1800s altered the configuration of bedrock at the site (“Rock Falls”), further complicating fish passage. Despite these manmade barriers, a strong herring run still exists today. With this funding, the Town of Braintree will remove the Ames Pond Dam and install a pool-and-weir fishway around the Rock Falls to restore 36 miles of unimpeded upstream access to 180 acres of habitat for river herring and American eel.

The Ames Pond Dam and Rock Falls are two of three fish passage barriers on the Monatiquot River. The third barrier, the Armstrong Dam, was funded for removal by ACFHP in 2021.

Text and photos provided by the Town of Braintree.