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Fish & Wildlife Service
November 2008

Neosho National Fish Hatchery Newsletter
Current Events in Fish Production Ponds in Use Again
This month sparked the beginning of winter fish production for us at Neosho. Water temperatures are officially cold enough for the rainbow trout to be stocked into our clay-bottom ponds. Our local predatory birds were quick to notice the trout now present in the unprotected ponds. However, local walkers and visitors using our walking trails are enjoying the improved hatchery aesthetics thanks to the filled ponds. These trout are scheduled to be seined and stocked during the third week of January after they reach their target stocking size of 9.5-10 inches. We at Neosho are very hopeful that these fish will provide us with enough eggs to allow us to operate at an estimated capacity of 20,000 fish averaging 9 inches in length.
Posters, live fish, and a DVD presentation were put on display at Neosho Middle School.

The sturgeon appear healthy and are fed trout fingerlings.

Keep Them Coming!
Five more adult broodstock pallid sturgeon were brought to Neosho by Missouri Department of Conservation and Fish and Wildlife Service’s Fisheries Resource Office in Columbia, MO. These additional fish bring our wild-caught sturgeon numbers to a total of 11 adults that can potentially be used for spawning this fiscal year. The sturgeon will be held at Neosho until tested for sexual maturity and genetic viability this coming spring.

With absolute honesty, we would love 11 more reproductive adults and look forward to working with the members of the Middle Basin Pallid Sturgeon Recovery Work Group to achieve our production goals. -Jaime Pacheco

In our constant effort to connect children in nature, Dave discussed fish life history and anatomy, hatchery production and operations, and details about his career path. He highlighted the importance and benefits that fish production at our hatchery brings to the many communities around us. Over 250 children participated in this event. -Jaime Pacheco

Future Stars of Major League Soccer

More Mouths to Feed
Our second batch of rainbow trout eggs was received for the 2009 fiscal year. Coming from Ennis, Montana, over 80,000 eggs were shipped on ice. These will develop into fish and obtain an average length of 10 inches in 10 months. This shipment will most likely be the last fish to be stocked for the 2009 fiscal year.

Fourth graders show off their medals after completing a fun-filled soccer season.

Community Activities Teacher for a Day
Hatchery Manager Dave Hendrix shared his experience with middle school children at Neosho Middle School for Career Day.

Pallid sturgeon are being held for spawning this spring.

As you may know, Neosho National Fish Hatchery receives tremendous support from the local community and city of Neosho. Hatchery Manager Dave Hendrix is doing his part by coaching little league soccer. “It’s a way to give back to the community that supports and helps us so much,” says Hollywood Hendrix. Dave

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Neosho National Fish Hatchery Newsletter
celebrated the end of the soccer season by throwing a party and giving his team a tour of the fish hatchery. -Jaime Pacheco

November 2008
experience and knowledge, is a great example for us to follow. Neosho NFH hopes to develop endangered mussel projects in fellowship with additional Fish and Wildlife Service offices across the United States. Although still in the research phase, we are currently compiling information and researching the logistics of these mussel projects.

Bob Gofourth paints specks on the dorsal fin of our rainbow trout statue.

Hatchery Improvements Leaky Pipe No More

Leaking pipe is fixed and concrete walkway paved.

During the past summer months, we have noticed a depression developing at the end of our raceways where water enters Pond 8. As time went along, a sinkhole appeared and we all know what a sinkhole means when water and pipelines are involved. We had the sinkhole excavated to discover that the water distribution box next to Pond 8 had developed a big leak that had washed out around the pipe and walkway next to Pond 8. We had the leak patched and the sinking walkway replaced. As time will tell, we will see how long the patch holds. -Jeff Messens

Local painter Bob Gofourth knows a little bit about the Neosho National Fish Hatchery. In fact, he and his sister, a local mural artist, grew up three blocks from the hatchery where their 87 year old mother still resides. Over the last 20 years, he has returned to restore and repaint our rainbow trout statues three times. The fish statue is a local celebrity in its own right. It has been the center point of many photos with hatchery visitors, and children seem to gravitate toward it. The fish has become a trademark of our hatchery, and we are very fortunate to have volunteers like Bob using his talents to improve our facility.

Melissa Cheung helps innoculate host fish with larval mussels at Genoa.

The More You Know…
This month, our administrative technician Heather Williams travelled to our regional office in Twin Cities, Minnesota. Over three days, she worked with Diane Zittel, administrative officer in Fisheries, to learn about the Fish and Wildlife Service’s Budget Tracking System. This system will ensure that our station’s budget can be balanced and tracked. These records can be viewed by regional staff and those from Fish and Wildlife Service’s Denver Finance Center.

Hatchery Staff in Training Can Endangered Mussels Be Raised at Neosho?

The hospitable staff of Genoa National Fish Hatchery.

Local Artist Restores Beloved Trout Statue

Biologist Melissa Cheung visited Genoa National Fish Hatchery just outside of LaCrosse, Wisconsin to answer this question. Biologist Tony Brady has been working with endangered mussels since beginning his Master’s thesis. Genoa’s mussel production facility, coupled with Tony’s

Unless otherwise stated, articles are written and assembled by Melissa Cheung.

Please feel free to visit us at 520 E Park Street, Neosho, MO 64850 or call us at 417-4510554.