Following a flood event in 2009, the Fochabers Burn river bed suffered extensive destabilisation with huge volumes of sediment being released. During the CASS Life Project (2004 to 2008) fish passes were built at two of the lower weir structures to improve fish passage. These were Denil type fish passes, a proven design although with the sediment loading in the Fochabers Burn they have required considerable maintenance over the years.
The June 2017 spate was another occasion with huge volumes of sediment moved downstream, completely blocking the lower fish pass in the process. Earlier this week Spey Fishery Board Bailiffs, Richard Whyte and Jason Hysert, carried out extensive work to fully restore the fish pass, which was a job well done! Richard said, “It is Amazing what can be done with a shovel, pinch bar and determination!” Hopefully the fish passes will now remain operational for the duration of the spawning run.
The photos below show the fish ladder before and after restoration.
Above photos show the top of the fish ladder completed covered with debris following the deposit of large volumes of sediment. Below photos show the fish ladder cleared and fully operational once again.