I have been trying for a while to capture some spawning action on the Gopro but persistance paid off today. Click here to view a short clip which shows a spawning sequence recorded in the middle reaches of the Spey.
A brief description – When the hen is ready to deposit eggs she adopts a vent down position. On this signal the male(s) moves in, quivers next to the hen and the milt and eggs are released simultanously. The dominant male is alongside the hen but he can’t stop the secondary male who times his entrance perfectly and no doubt contributes to the fertilisation process. The hen looks almost spent but this spawning event would have been one of many in the process of depositing all her eggs in the redd. The clip was from a two hour recording during which the hen becomes almost completely spent. Her tail is bedraggled and she is unlikely to survive but her job is done. The hen was not small but she is dwarfed by the two larger males.
Spawning is getting underway across the middle Spey now, but even in the mainstem we could use some water; several important spawning stretches are currently inaccessible due to the low water.