In 1868 he bought a farm at [[Honeoye Falls, New York]], and began to hatch fish of various kinds. When the [[U.S. Fish Commission]] was formed in 1872 he was sent for by Professor [[Spencer F. Baird]] to hatch [[shad]] for the [[Potomac River]]. In 1875 he established hatcheries at [[Lexington, Virginia|]] and [[Blacksburg, Virginia|]] for the state of [[Virginia]]. A year earlier he had hatched the first and [[Grayling (species)|]]s.
After several vain attempts to transport [[salmon]] eggs to [[Europe]], he devised a [[refrigerator]] box, and in 1875 succeeded in carrying the eggs to [[Germany]]. He also, at the same time, invented a conical hatching apparatus, by which, through the admission of water at the bottom, shad and other eggs were hatched in bulk instead of in layers upon trays or floating boxes. In 1884 he hatched the adhesive eggs of the [[smelt (fish)|]], although all previous attempts had been failures.