As reported a while back we stocked the Corrie and Tommore Burns at the end of June with fed fry. Today we went back to monitor their progress.
We surveyed two sites in the Tommore, one with a three run protocol to establish as accurately as possible the fish densities and the other with just a single run.
We found salmon fry in moderate densities (C class) at the lower site and good density (B class) in the upper (using the SFCC classification system). The mean size of the Tommore salmon fry was 54.5mm, if you recall they were 34mm when we stocked at the end of June.
The density of trout parr at both sites surprised us, excellent or A class in both on the SFCC scale.
The instream habitat was excellent in the Tommore Burn with lots of moss covered boulders and cobbles and undercut banks.
The Corrie Burn is quite different to the Tommore with its clear water and high conductivity. I expected the Corrie Burn fry to be larger and they were, although the average density at the three sites completed was lower than in the Tommore. The mean size of all the salmon fry found in the Corrie Burn was 64.2mm, again they were 34mm when stocked at the end of June. We didn’t have a chance to measure the remaining fish in the hatchery but we think the Corrie fry were larger than the remaining hatchery fry and the Tommore smaller, so honours even!
At the lower Corrie Burn site one of the trout had a parasitic worm protruding from its vent. This was a thread-like worm, similar to horsehair worms I’d seen in the past, although I didn’t think they were fish parasites. I’m not sure of the species.
The quality of the trout in the Corrie Burn was exceptional and again they were present in excellent or good densities at all three sites completed.
So another interesting days ends. It was completed with assistance from our summer students Toby and Callum and Jimmy Woods, Spey hatchery manager. If you are involved with hatcheries the satisfaction you get when you see your fry in the burns never diminishes.