Experts concerned about drought-like conditions

Tina Detelj

EAST LYME, Conn. (WTNH) — Drought conditions are taking a toll on rivers and streams across the state. 

The state has had to stock different rivers with fish because some are too low. There is also concern about water supplies. 
The Pattagansett River feeds East Lyme’s water supply. 

“Well six is off because the level is below where it should be,” said Paul Formica, East Lyme’s First Selectman. 

That takes into account the higher level required between February and May to accommodate trout and other fish in the river. East Lyme is very familiar with having to conserve water, but usually not until the summer months. 

“What we’re talking about is the potential of early than normal conservation activities because of the lack of snow because of the lack of snow melt,” Formica explained. 

Even the abundance of water from last winter isn’t keeping the levels up enough. 

“What we’re hearing is the levels people are seeing generally in reservoirs, ponds. They’re visibly seeing changes in the water table. They’re seeing it drop, they’re able to walk further in than they have in the past,” said Patrick McCormack from the Uncas Health District . 

McCormack says he has gotten word from the state’s drought advisory work group which is expressing only moderate concern about water levels and keeping an eye on them. 

Those who have private wells also keep him informed. 

“Generally we get the call that ‘I think I need to drill a new well because my well has gone dry,'” he says. 

This weekend’s rain will certainly be a welcome sight for those keeping a watchful eye on these water levels, but they do hope there’s a lot more where that comes from.

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