Schools salmon fry project comes to life in local watercourse

Minnigaff pupils learn about electrofishing
Minnigaff pupils learn about electrofishing

Galloway Fisheries Trust (GFT) staff were undertaking a spot of electrofishing to complete a project they began with schools in January.

Pupils from Minnigaff Primary School returned to the Campbells Burn (a small tributary of the Penkiln Burn) to see electrofishing uncover their salmon fry stocked into the watercourse in early spring.

Minnigaff pupils enjoy a splashing time

Minnigaff pupils enjoy a splashing time

Staff said in a report this week: “Not surprisingly, due to a prolonged cold spring this year, the fry were still pretty small!

“We also fished a good number of salmon parr from the water but it was the larger spotty brown trout which received most attention and the kids, although distracted by the onslaught of midges, had fun delving around in the burn to return the fish to the water at the end of their visit.

“Thank you to Murdo and Terence from the Cree Hatchery and Habitat Trust for supporting the Minnigaff School fish project this year. “

Dalry High School pupils completed a similar exercise over on the Dee, overseeing electrofishing to collect salmon fry from a burn previously stocked with 100 salmon back in March.

On top of the usual array of fish species captured, the pupils are always thrilled to see crayfish turn and a number of large specimens were captured and dispatched on site at the end of the session.

If you are a primary or secondary school teacher working within Galloway who would like to be involved in a GFT-led fish project next year, please contact Rowan Armstrong at the Galloway Fisheries Trust on 01671 40 3011 or by email at rowan@gallowayfisheriestrust.org.

Throughout the summer GFT would like to offer individuals the chance to accompany them during electrofishing surveys on the rivers Luce, Bladnoch, Cree, Fleet, Dee and Urr and would welcome enquiries from anyone interested in attending an electrofishing demonstration on their local river.

Rowan also has a few places available on an invertebrate monitoring workshop next week (see the Galloway Fisheries Trust website) in Newton Stewart (15th July) and Gatehouse (16th July).

Please contact Rowan as soon as possible to note your interest in attending the workshop.