Report on the 2001 stock assessment of the River Darwen catchment

Wilson, D. (2002) Report on the 2001 stock assessment of the River Darwen catchment. Preston, UK, Environment Agency North West, 21pp.

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The River Darwen is a highly impacted Lancashire river with very little known about its fishery interest above the impassable weir at Salmesbury Bottoms. Below the weir there are populations of coarse fish around the confluence with the River Ribble. To the knowledge of local bailiff staff, prior to 1996 the fish population in the middle and upper River Darwen had never been surveyed by electric fishing. In order to address this lack of knowledge, a survey was undertaken during the summer of 1996 with the aim of evaluating the salmonid and cyprinid fish population in the river. Twenty two sites were surveyed by electric fishing between June 11th and July 11th 1996. Information was gathered on the presence and density of fish populations in the river catchment, and analysed according to the National Fisheries Classification Scheme in order to determine how these populations compare nationally with sites of similar habitat features. From this report, recommendations were made to improve and develop the fishery potential in relation to water quality and habitat prioritising areas classed as being Ashless. It was recommended that juvenile coarse fish should be stocked in the Houghton Bottoms area. This area has excellent fishery habitat and was found to contain a minor coarse fish population. Water quality in this stretch of river was thought to be good enough to establish a major coarse fish population. Fish were introduced for the first time in 1998 at Houghton Bottoms from the Agency's Leyland Fish Farm. 3000 each of Roach, Chub and Dace were introduced. Further fish introductions occurred in 2000 with the stocking of 1000 Chub, again from the Agency's Leyland Fish Farm in the Lower Darwen and Witton areas of the main river on a trial basis.

Item Type: Monograph or Serial Issue
Title: Report on the 2001 stock assessment of the River Darwen catchment
Personal Creator/Author:
Wilson, D.
Number of Pages: 21
Date: 2002
Publisher: Environment Agency North West
Place of Publication: Preston, UK
Funders: Environment Agency Archives North West
Contact Email Address:
Issuing Agency: Environment Agency, UK (Freshwater Biological Association)
Uncontrolled Keywords: England; Ribble Catchment; Rivers; River fisheries; Fishery surveys; Distribution; Electric fishing; Population dynamics; Coarse fish
Subjects: Ecology
Item ID: 8040
Depositing User: Hardy B Schwamm
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2012 15:39
Last Modified: 21 Feb 2012 15:39
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