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Wildlife scientist joins Lake Champlain group

COLCHESTER - Biologist Wayne Laroche, 60, will be become a prime staff scientist with the Vermont-based conservation organization, Lake Champlain International (LCI). LCI has conducted various lake studies including several along Addison County's lakeshore.

Laroche recently retired as the second-longest serving commissioner of the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Laroche has science degrees in both wildlife and fisheries management, has conducted research on behalf of major universities and research laboratories.

According to his curriculum vitae, the Franklin County native has worked as a consulting biologist on the S.S. Exxon Valdez oil spill and Lake Champlain walleye reproduction research among other efforts. He holds a bachelor's degree in wildlife management from the University of Maine and a master's degree in fisheries management from California State University at Humboldt.

Included in Laroche's areas of responsibility will be attending government committee and policy meetings and overseeing research projects that will improve the health of Lake Champlain.

"LCI has always understood and appreciated the rigors of science, and I am very happy to be a part of such a well-respected team that has already made significant contributions to the future of the lake I love," said Laroche.

According to Laroche, several projects will keep him busy in the new year.

At the top of LCI's to-do list are several complex efforts including the restoration of the Missisquoi River fish passage, identifying the impacts of pesticides in the lake, and recovering native game fish and endangered species, including salmon and sturgeon.

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