By recycling real Christmas trees through the annual Christmas tree collection program, area residents can improve fish habitat in the city's lakes in the Recreation Complex and R.S. Matthews Park and the Corps of Engineers' Lake Wappapello, which ultimately will improve the fishing in those lakes.
The Sikeston Park Division, with assistance from Pullen Brothers Inc., is collecting real Christmas trees again this year for use as fish shelters in the City's two public fishing lakes and at Lake Wappapello.
Today through Jan. 3, local residents may take their real Christmas trees to the designated collection site on Airport Drive behind the Chamber of Commerce building.
On Jan. 4, Park Division employees will load a portion of the trees collected on to a trailer provided by Pullen Brothers Inc. for transport to the Corps of Engineers at Lake Wappapello. The remainder of the trees will be taken to the City's two lakes in the Recreation Complex and R.S. Matthews Park where they will be bundled in small groups to be submerged in the lakes for fish shelters.
The fish shelter program affords area residents an opportunity to dispose of their real Christmas trees in an ecologically sound manner, and at the same time enhance fishing opportunities for fishermen at local lakes.
The shelters created by the submerged bundles of Christmas trees provide fish with breeding areas and resting places. They also provide young fish safe living space where they can feed without being preyed upon by larger fish. With this protective environment, fish have a better chance to grow to maturity and provide a good fishing experience for anglers. New trees are added to selected shelters each year to maintain their usefulness as cover.
For more information on the Christmas tree drop-off site and program, contact Jiggs Moore at 471-6070.