Tuesday, 22 November 2011 16:20

Derwent To See Salmon Again

Game species to return to North East after 200 years thanks to new project.

Salmon and seatrout could soon be returning to the North East’s river Derwent following work to be carried out by the Environment Agency.

The two species haven’t been seen in the river for centuries due to the man-made Derwenthaugh weir built in the 18th Century near Gateshead blocking their access. However, the EA in conjunction with Gateshead Council has now announced a project to construct a fish pass to by-pass the structure, known locally as Lady’s Steps, once again allowing the fish to head upstream to enter the river Tyne and on to spawning grounds.

Work on the project is due to start in January next year and should be finished by spring.

“By building a fish pass we’ll be allowing salmon and sea trout to move freely into the River Derwent for the first time since the 18th century”, said project manager at the Environment Agency, Jon Shelley, “We try to help fish along rivers wherever we can, and are always looking for ways we can increase the opportunity for affordable salmon and sea trout angling. This project will open up access to a salmon and sea trout fishery on the Tyne that everyone can enjoy. “

The work should also see benefits for other species on the river, including brown trout and grayling that become stranded below the weir after floods.

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