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|Posted: Sat Jul 23, 2011 10:00 am Post subject: Anglers asked to help spot signs of fish in distress
|As anglers return to the riverbanks for the start of the new fishing season (16 June), the Environment Agency is asking them to keep an eye out for signs of fish in distress.
As anglers return to the riverbanks for the start of the new fishing season (16 June), the Environment Agency is asking them to keep an eye out for signs of fish in distress.
The recent warm, dry, weather, has led to low water levels in rivers such as the River Bain, Barlings Eau, Upper Witham and Welland. Defra and the Environment Agency confirmed drought status for parts of Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire on Friday, 10 June.
This, combined with weed growth and warm water temperatures can lead to low oxygen levels and potential fish-kills.
Reuben Page, of the Environment Agency’s Fisheries, Recreation and Biodiversity team, said: “While the warm weather is great for people, it can cause problems for the fish in the region’s rivers. We monitor the region’s waterways regularly both in terms of water quality and quantity as well as surveying the numbers and species of fish, however, anglers can play a vital part by acting as our ‘eyes and ears’ on the riverbank. We therefore urge anglers who spot fish in a distressed state – for example gasping at the water surface, or trapped in shallow water pools – to contact us. This will enable us to act quickly to minimise the impact on the river’s fish population.”
All fish are susceptible to low oxygen levels and poor environmental conditions, however, some are more vulnerable than others.
Trout, for example, are an upland species that need a constant supply of cool freshwater to thrive and soon struggle when flows and water quality are reduced.
Information about distressed fish or water pollution incidents should be reported to the Environment Agency’s Incident Hotline on 0800 80 70 60.
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