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Re-engineering of the Lochay Falls

News update: Jan 2001. Paul Fishlock. Rumour has it that SNH have blocked any work on the falls. There might be genuine reasons for such a move. For example if there was a unique stock of brown trout above the falls, but this is highly doubtful. Sounds to me like another case of salmon getting little support because they are not fluffy.

 

The following statement was made by Andrew Mactaggart of the TDSFB at the opening of the 2000 season:

 

River Lochay Falls Project

The River Lochay, one of the major upper rivers flowing into Loch Tay, is impassable to salmon or trout because of a waterfall - The Falls of Lochay.

The North of Scotland Hydro-Electric Board installed a fish pass over the falls in the 1950's, unfortunately the design is such that this only has limited success.

The River Board, with the help of the Foundation intends to open up the falls by cutting new steps into the rock. This can be achieved for a fraction of the cost of a traditional fish pass, while at the same time reducing the impact on the environment.

Having achieved free migration for the salmon and trout into the Lochay system, it is further proposed to improve the habitat within the system. This will include fencing sheep from the river banks to allow natural vegetation to recover. Salmon stocks, especially spring stocks have shown a drastic decline over the last number of years.

This project should go a long way to help the River Lochay achieve its maximum annual production of an additional 2-3,000 salmon (of which most will be big spring salmon).

 
 
 

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