Looking downstream on the River Cree
Looking upstream on the River Bladnoch
Felling of commercial forestry in Galloway Forest Park
Looking upstream on the River Luce
North American Signal Crayfish
The sandy beach at Loch Grannoch
Belted Galloway Cattle, or 'Belties'
Fly fishing on the River Cree
A small upland burn
The High Cree, looking towards Cairnsmore of Fleet
A small waterfall on the Buchan Burn
A salmon from the Kirkcudbrightshire Dee
The River And Fishery Trusts of Scotland (RAFTS) and the Association of Salmon Fishery Boards (ASFB) held their annual joint conference last Thursday at Battleby near Perth. The conference was very well attended and was fully booked out.
The morning speakers included an interested talk by Andrew Thin who is leading the independent Wild Fisheries Review which began on 1st March and will be completed in six months. Andrew gave an insight into what the review will be covering and how interested parties can become involved. The review will be examining in detail the present role and work of the wide range of organisations involved in the management of fisheries across Scotland (such as Fishery Trusts, DSFBs, SNH, SEPA, Marine Scotland Science, Atlantic Salmon Trust and many more) and will be making recommendations for a future management structure for fisheries which would best suit Scotland. Interesting times!
The afternoon session focussed on salmon stocking. A number of speakers gave talks covering recent research and work on understanding more about the likely outcomes of salmon stocking programmes in the short and long term. Due to concerns of lower than previously believed return rates of stocked fish (primarily due to low marine survival rates) and alterations to the genetic makeup of stocked fish compared to wild fish (which can reduce the ‘fitness’ of the overall population) RAFTS commissioned a detailed literature review of relevant information – View here. RAFTS have produced their Stocking Policy supported by the findings of the literature review, which overall concludes that stocking is usually of very little benefit and can actually be damaging overall to wild fish populations – View here. These two documents are essential reading for all those involved in hatchery programmes.