ELLSWORTH — A crew from J.E. Butler in Holden spent the better part of three days last week removing a dam at the mouth of Branch Lake Stream where the waterway joins the Union River just above Leonard Lake. The Downeast Salmon Federation, with funding from the city of Ellsworth, the Hancock County Soil and Water Conservation District and in-kind support from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund and Brookfield Renewable Energy, supervised the operation. According to DESF biologist Brett Ciccotelli, the dam once formed part of the city’s water supply system. It’s removal, he said, “will open four and a half miles of good salmon habitat” and benefit the return of blueback herring and shad to the Union River watershed.