ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Instead of taking your live Christmas tree to the curb when the holidays are over, take them to the lake.

Natural Christmas trees are the perfect habitat for fish.

The Missouri Department of Conservation says man-made lakes often lack cover for fish, and submerging live trees provides that.

Conservation officials sink the trees at depths of 4 to 7 feet using cement blocks. The trees have the added benefit of attracting food sources for fish and create the perfect place for fish to spawn.

You can drop off natural Christmas trees at the August A. Busch Conservation Area in St. Charles, or at Spanish Lake Park in North St. Louis County through January 10.

Conservation officials say it’s best to drop off the entire tree without removing branches, and make sure you remove all lights, garland and ornaments.

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