There’s a glumness to the times that comply with Christmas. The presents have been unwrapped, the feast eaten, and it’s time to undecorate the Christmas tree, which now bleeds needles each time you have a look at it. However some Christmas timber get a second likelihood at life in a slightly surprising place: on the backside of a lake, surrounded by fish searching for habitat.

The Missouri Division of Conservation is asking Missourians to swing by the Central Regional Workplace in Columbia and drop off their used timber. MDC plans to make use of the timber for fish habitat enchancment initiatives by throwing them into ponds and lakes across the state.

In fact, it’s not so simple as heaving the tree off a dock or boat ramp, which is why consultants beg the general public to not recycle timber on their very own. Conservation officers typically bundle timber collectively and rig them with rope and cement to weigh them down. They then place the tree piles in areas the place native fish species want the quilt and construction. Small fish congregate across the branches to munch on the algae and plankton that emerge from the decomposing biomass. These small fish create a smorgasbord of forage for bigger recreation fish. This, in flip, makes the waters round these tree “cribs” glorious spots for anglers, in keeping with MDC fisheries biologist Brian McKeage.

This observe is neither new nor restricted to Missouri. Christmas tree recycling packages have improved fish habitat throughout the nation for many years. Some drop-off websites get inundated with unsold timber from close by distributors. That’s been the case for Claytor Lake State Park in Dublin, Virginia. Claytor Lake assistant supervisor Austin Monnett tells Out of doors Life the Park acquired properly over 100 timber final 12 months after space {hardware} shops donated their leftovers. (The Claytor Lake drop-off website is on a one-year hiatus throughout a workers turnover however they anticipate to be again in operation subsequent vacation season.)

Most state wildlife companies give a special present to anglers after tree assortment ends. The Virginia Division of Wildlife Assets releases maps (like this one of Lake Frederick) that present the place the Christmas tree reefs and others are situated. The Kentucky Division of Fish and Wildlife Assets will publish GPS coordinates for the Christmas tree reefs on their web site.

Between releasing up landfill house, supplementing the underwater meals chain, and manufacturing new fishing honey holes, donating your previous Christmas tree for fish habitat is a good way to proceed the season of giving. Simply ensure that to drop the tree off at an official website manned by a wildlife company or different group. In any case, because the Ohio Division of Pure Assets points out, discarding a tree on public or personal property with out permission may earn you a littering ticket.

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