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Friday, 5 October 2012

All It Takes Is A Little Mussel?

When you try to fix something, sometimes you need to exert that extra bit of force and the obstruction finally clears.  However who would have thought that a 'little mussel' would literally help protect Atlantic Salmon.

Believe it or not, the River Dee Trust aims to do just that.  Safeguard the River Dee's future by restoring the Freshwater Pearl Mussel population and consequently re-establishing Scotland as a stronghold for the species.  That extra bit of 'mussel,' will also be of significant interest to anglers because the work will also protect Atlantic Salmon which makes a significant contribution to the Scottish Economy.  The BBC's environment correspondent, David Miller recently reported on the move to protect the Pearl Mussel.
Freshwater Pearl Mussel
River Dee Trust's Ken Reid says that "One of the main drivers to help reach our river  restoration objectives is fundraising.  Through every pound raised we can secure match funding for enhanced values which allow us to create ambitious work programmes."  In fact, the Dee Trust's work is so important that Glasgow Angling Centre's Managing Director, Paul Devlin, donated £1000 to support the project's objectives.

Paul Devlin & Dee Trust's Ken Reid
The work is being delivered jointly by DSFB and the River Dee Trust who have secured £420,620 of LIFE funding plus an equal amount matched by SEPA.  However the success of the project also relies on local partners and other contributors.  This is what struck the cord with Glasgow Angling Centre as we firmly believe that in order to allow future generations to enjoy fishing, we need to take responsibility, both in our direct interaction with the immediate environment and to support any cause which helps sustain the sport.

The LIFE project will deliver £2.6 million of work which will include riparian (the banks of a natural course of water) tree planting in the Upper Dee catchment to alleviate future increases in water temperature that will arise as a consequence of global warming.  The funding will also help the creation of buffer strips along 45km of tributaries in the middle Dee which will decrease diffuse pollution even more.  By restoring the riparian zone, and creating the buffers, this will reduce pollution and bank erosion which will increase the Dee's water quality, effectively benefiting the river's population of Pearl Mussels and Salmon.
The River Dee
The official launch of the project was held at Portach on the Dee on Friday 28th September and will run for 4 years until September 2016.  It is hoped the work will help save not just the Freshwater Mussel, water quality and Salmon numbers, but also illicit a deeper understanding of the implications of both direct and indirect actions which damage our heritage.  In the case of the River Dee Trust's objectives, that does require a little "Mussel."

1 comment:

  1. as a sport we need to do so much more. Stories of birds caught in discarded line and the disgraceful state the banks of our Lochs are left in do us so much harm.
    I was pike fishing in the Trossachs recently and just on the bank where I was, I collected a full carrier bag of discarded line and bait packets.

    ReplyDelete