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Augusta, Maine

Group says wildlife surging since dams removed

Environmentalists say the removal of the Edwards Dam in Augusta and Fort Halifax Dam in Winslow has allowed river herring populations to prosper in the Kennebec River. The dam was removed on July 1, 1999, followed by the Fort Halifax Dam on July 17, 2008. The Natural Resources Council of Maine says the number of alewives that have reached spawning habitats has surged since then. The group says the number was just over 500,000 in 2008 and it has topped 2 million every year since 2011. The group says the resurgent herring population has also allowed bald eagles to thrive. Maine state officials counted 58 bald eagles on June 6 along a 5-mile stretch of the Sebasticook River leading from the Kennebec River to the Benton Falls fish lift. (AP)