According to an article published yesterday in the New York Times, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission's ongoing project to assess and identify previously un-surveyed wild trout streams -- now in its second year -- is slated to receive $240,000 in new funding. These funds will provide a major boost to the proactive Pennsylvania effort to identify and manage wild trout streams, which many consider particularly important given the relative co-location of many of these streams with the ever-increasing natural resource excavation efforts in areas of the Marcellus Shale.
The new funding is provided by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the Richard King Mellon Foundation and the Degenstein Foundation. The program receives no general funding from the state, making the new funds the first for the program not provided by fish and game license fees collected by the PFBC.
Pennsylvania has some of the nation's best documentation of wild trout streams, but advocates indicate further exploration is needed. Identifying streams that support wild trout and placing them under official designation immediately places the stream and surrounding wetlands under "Exceptional Value" status, providing further protection to these habitats which support wild trout populations.