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US Fish & Wildlife Service FieldNotes

Genoa National Fish Hatchery Upgrades Fish Distribution System

Region 3, December 14, 2012
New distribution unit demonstrating dump bed.
New distribution unit demonstrating dump bed. - Photo Credit: n/a

Genoa National Fish Hatchery's old 1997 Dodge distribution truck with its circa 1980's 375 gallon fiberglass tank was recently retired and replaced with a 2012 Ford F350 truck and 500 gallon insulated stainless steel tank. The old unit had made many thousands of distribution trips and the tank was built by the famous Peterson Tank Manufacturing Company in Minnesota. The truck and tank had served the station well, but with the many advances in fish distribution since the 1980s, upgrades were necessary to allow us to haul fish more safely and economically.

Many thanks to our partners from Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Wild Rose State Fish Hatchery for sharing their drawings and suggestions from their recent distribution tank procurement. The new unit also has a dump chassis to allow the bed to be tilted to expedite fish removal. All oxygen and aeration controls are also at ground level to increase ease of operation and reduce climbing accidents. High pressure oxygen cylinders are also closer to ground level to reduce lifting accidents. Aerator speeds can be adjusted as well to reduce damage to sensitive fish species. Life system monitors also are located in the cab to ensure that aerators are operational from the driver’s seat.

Funding that made this project possible originated from the President's Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. Genoa currently distributes fish to upstate New York and western Massachusetts to meet lake sturgeon and lake trout restoration goals in the Great Lakes basin. This truck and the distribution systems it supports will allow us to arrive after the more than 20 hour trip to these eastern locales with healthy fish.

Contact Info: Doug Aloisi, 608-689-2605, Doug_Aloisi@fws.gov