GH reported that brood stock collection had been
difficult in winter 2019 and that there had been a
shortage of cock fish.
Despite the slow start 28,000 eggs had been laid down
and hatching was progressing well
He noted that 30% of the alevins were stocked out into
side streams under artificial redds. Monitoring of these
sites later in the season had showed high densities of
fry – attesting to the success of the method.
GH noted that the Lynher hatchery was run solely by
volunteers and the provision of the site by N Lintott was
highly appreciated. The work of the secretary (A White)
was also highlighted.
Financial donations were critical to the continued
existence of the hatchery. He thanked LDAC for their
generous financial donations in supporting the hatchery
and urged Club members to join the Lynher River
Association (£10.00 pa) thereby helping to further
finance the activity.
At the LDAC AGM Arthur White gave a brief hatchery update.
The 2017/18 output of 56,000 fry into the river at a
cost of 5p per fry
The cost of the operation being solely dependent
upon donations and acknowledged the critical
financial contributions made by LDAC in sustaining
Only 17,000 eggs were stripped this winter due to
limited brood stock availability
Hatching had now started but that they were
expecting approximately 15,000 fry for stocking out
later in 2019. Whilst this lower number was
disappointing it was recognised that natural
variations should be expected.
He wanted to thank G Hake in particular for his
efforts in leading the hatchery work and N Lintott for
providing the site.
At the LDAC AGM Richard Grieve gave an update on the great progress at Colliford Salmon Hatchery.
He gave an interesting discussion on the hatchery operations
and water flow issues. Richard reported that this was the start of the third year of
operation of the relocated Colliford Hatchery.
It is widely recognised that the prior concerns over water quality had
Richard thanked his volunteer staff for all their efforts,
especially those that were from local communities,
not the more typical angling population. He noted the key LDAC/FRA support for the
Richard then discussed in detail the issues over water levels
and their possible effects on salmonid migration in
the Fowey. Whilst the SWW releases of summer water for
abstraction at Restormel provided artificially
high flows in the mid-river this did nothing in
the lower estuarine reaches as it was all being
abstracted at Restormel. Richard's concern was that the abstraction of water
at Restormel was seriously impacting the ability
of fish to by pass the weir at Restormel. Water
should be left to run out to the estuary below
Lostwithiel, especially that associated with
water bank releases.
Richard has requested the FRA review the water-bank at Colliford and that it be more fully utilised to encourage
migrating fish from estuary to upper river and
that the FRA/WRT could focus on this issue
with SWW and the EA.
Finally Richard noted that brood stock collection in late
2018 had been fair but with the majority of hen fish
being small grilse. Late stripping of one fish had
resulted in helpful EA agreement not to insist on
factorial mating to complete the operation.
In support of hatcheries Rob Williams presented an analysis of Fowey
counter figures that clearly showed that, in the period before
the Wainsford hatchery was first in operation, the 9 year
average was 696 fish whilst the 10 year average during
operations (including the 3 year smolt/first migration period)
showed that this average had risen to 902 fish (a 23%
Whilst some might discount such data, at worst it showed that
Wainsford hatchery had no detrimental effect on Fowey
stocks and at best it improved them substantially.
The LDAC Chairman noted that fin clipping of 25% of the Fowey fry was
undertaken and urged members to look out for such fish and
to report them if caught – thereby proving the success of the
At the LDAC AGM in February 2018 - Richard Grieve gave an update on Colliford Salmon Hatchery acitivy, including -
Thanked LDAC for continued support for the
Noted the good collaboration between
EA/SWW/FRA/WRT in making the hatchery
Noted the first year of operation with good outputs
Noted that brood-stock had been collected from
across most of the catchment for 2018
Provided an interested commentary on some of the
lessons learned from the first year of operation. It
had, for instance, become clear that water
temperature was critical in hatching and normal fry development. To this end an innovative and cost
effective chilling system had been installed which recirculated
chilled water across egg trays, thereby
reducing the volumes required. This concept had
also been transferred to the Lynher hatchery as best
Recommended the excellent short film (Lost at Sea)
as an interesting learning tool for all salmon anglers.
Noted the importance of judging the hatchery and its
success on facts, not supposition. In particular he
touched on the motivational impact negative
statements could have on the small pool of
volunteers that kept the hatchery going.
Firstly Arthur White thanked LDAC for the financial contribution it
makes to the running of the hatchery on the Lynher. Unlike
the Colliford hatchery the Lynher hatchery receives no
funding from SWW or other external agencies; the £2000
pa running costs have to be met from contributions from
local anglers and the volunteers themselves.
Operating problems from previous years had been
resolved inasmuch as -
The EA had granted the Hatchery a license to collect
brood stock in November, after the season had
closed. This means that the brood stock are no
longer held for long periods in warm (autumnal)
waters and their health has improved – allowing for
more successful stripping. Thanks were given to the
EA for their support.
Later stripping increased the viability of eggs as the
water temperatures were now lower during their
Operation to date -
Brood stock quotas met
52,000 eggs stripped. However one batch was poorly
developed and those eggs (10,000) were then reintroduced
into artificial redds in the river to prevent
their inevitable deterioration in the hatchery.
Of the remainder approximately 50% of the eggs had
hatched to date.
The stocking plan for the fry this year would involve split
releases – half the stock would be reared on whilst the other
half would be introduced to the river as swim-up fry. This plan
prevented rising water temperature from impacting
survivability during the summer.
This year the hatchery would also be looking to raise funds for
a chiller unit to further improve survivability rates in the future.
The Fowey Rivers Association and South West Water are re-opening the Hatchery under the dam at Colliford - at the head waters of the St Neot.
This is a great opportunity - and with the generosity of South West Water and their ongoing commitment of compensation for Colliford reservoir - we can operate a Hatchery far beyond the scale that we could afford if we funded it ourselves with donations and conservation grants.
When the programme starts in October we will be looking for volunteers to help operate the Hatchery - and we will start feeding more information nearer the time.
If you would like to volunteer - please send your details to email@example.com
Currently we have obtained our full brood stock allowance of 16 fish, although as in the last two years cock fish have been very scarce.
Despite high water levels in recent weeks there is little evidence of fish running the river.
The brood fish are generally in good condition, although we have increased the Pyces and salt treatment to maintain their health. No evidence as yet that any fish are reaching the stripping stage, but we rarely reach this position before mid-December at the earliest.
Water temperature is still at 9 - 10 oC which is still rather high for the time of year.. (Arthur White)
We set up a small temporary Hatchery solution in North Cornwall for the 2013/14 programme - but the weather and the quantity and quality of Broodstock fish available defeated us.
The end result does not convey the amount of work involved - and thanks must go to Justin Ruscombe-King of Westcountry Trout for offering his Hatchery - also The Fowey River Association for their support and funding.
I am very pleased to be able to give a positive Fowey Hatchery
A permanent home is still not in place but some progress
has been made in the 2 years we have been away.
Let us recap for a moment - South West Water (SWW) pay The
Fowey River Association (FRA) compensation for the lost spawning
at the top of the St Neot tributary caused by the building of
Colliford Reservoir. SWW built a hatchery below the dam and
which subsequently closed.
Efforts to raise salmon for re-stocking
then moved to Wainsford. Wainsford hatchery was very successful
but regrettably had to close in 2011.
SWW are still committed to raise salmon in compensation for lost
spawning - and in conjunction with the FRA they continue to look
for a site to re-establish and thereafter fund our new permanent
home. But these things take time...
While this work goes on we have worked out a temporary solution
for the 2013/14 salmon-rearing season - in conjunction with our
regular hatchery technical advisor Justin Ruscombe-King - we are
going to raise 30-40,000 Salmon in Boscastle at his trout farm.
At the time of writing (December 2013) we have made the 25-mile
journey from the Fowey to North Cornwall with several cock fish
but only a couple of hen fish. This is the bare minimum required
for 'factorial mating' whereby multiple cock fish are used with one
hen's eggs thereby spreading the genes.
We have a great team collecting brood-stock fish throughout the
Fowey catchment - and LDAC waters and anglers are at the
forefront of this work - so thank you to everyone who has donated
time and indeed fish.
We very much hope to have more news very soon. If you would
like to keep up to date we have re-opened the Fowey Hatchery
Blog on the FRA website www.riverfowey.org If you would like
to be involved please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org