First day out electrofishing

We surveyed a small burn in the Avon catchment today where a micro hydro scheme is under consideration. Three survey sites were required, all fully quantitative three run sites so it was a good opportunity for the new students to try electrofishing properly for the first time.

The upper site was located on the woodland/moorland fringe and was typical good habitat found in most small Spey burns.

Poly, Steve and Michael surveying in a wee burn. Only trout were found in the upper reaches

Polly, Steve and Michael surveying in a wee burn. Only trout were found in the upper reaches

Electrofishing this way involves a lot of equipment, hence the reason a  lot of our sites are close to road bridges.

Electrofishing this way involves a lot of equipment, hence the reason a lot of our sites are close to road bridges.

 

A wee brownie but it was the biggest found in the upper site. No salmon were found int he upper sites and it is unlikely that sea trout can reach there either. This is an adult resident brownie.

A wee brownie but it was the biggest found in the upper site. No salmon were found in the upper sites and it is unlikely that sea trout can reach there either. This is an adult resident brownie.

 

In the lower two sites we found quite a lot of fry, ranging in size from 23 to 35mm. Their small size made identification difficult but considering the size and distribution we thought all were trout. Many of the fry were so small they fell through the banner net mesh; just one of the reasons why electrofishing is not normally done until July.

A selection of trout, probably four age classes present, fry, 1+, 2+ and 3+ parr although that is still to be confirmed by scale reading.

A selection of trout, probably four age classes present, fry, 1+, 2+ and 3+ parr although that is still to be confirmed by scale reading.

It was an absolutely fantastic day to be out warm, sunny and a nice breeze to keep things fresh.  Great for electrofishing but not so good for fishing!

 

 

 

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