Through-out summer (July to September), South Cumbria Rivers Trust have been, and continue, to undertake fish surveys. This is a fascinating way to learn more about what resides in our local becks, aiding our understanding of population changes and habitat opportunities .
Fish surveys are carried out using a method called electrofishing, which is the same method used by the Environment Agency. It involves passing a small electric current through the water which temporarily stuns the fish enabling them to be caught, identified and measured. Surveys are completed over a 50m reach allowing the density of fish to be calculated and a score for National Fisheries Classification determined. This gives us comparable data with other organisations and across time.
We run a three year rolling programme for most sites. However, on a site where we have done specific interventions or are working up a project we will survey more frequently, thereby allowing us to assess the impact of the project. Understanding these changes and gaining a better understanding of any issues or improvement opportunities is really important for informing our catchment plans.
South Cumbria Rivers Trust work in partnership with the Environment Agency to align programmes ensuring coverage and data collation is maximised. Results from our surveys, and the Environment Agency’s surveys, will be available online after the survey season. Previous year’s reports can be found here.
If you would like to help out on any of our electrofishing during September, please get in touch: email@example.com
Thanks to everyone who has volunteered so far this year! We couldn’t do it without you.