Atlantic Salmon Spawning Again In River Lyvennet

Children fishwatching in the River Lyvennet, Cumbria

Fish watchers on the banks of the Lyvennet river, Maulds Meaburn may now see Atlantic Salmon.

Local children designed the information signs beside Maulds Meaburn’s Salmon ladder at the Lyvennet Weir, and today’s news release from The Environment Agency (8th December 2014) will be greeted with excitement by young and old in the Eden Valley, Cumbria.

These Lyvennet trout, now share their river with Atlantic Salmon again.

These Lyvennet trout, now share their river with Atlantic Salmon again.

According to the release, over 20 Atlantic Salmon spawning sites or redds as they are known, were documented this week along the stretch of river that was improved by Eden Rivers Trust (ERT) earlier this year in a joint project to naturalise the course of the Lyvennet river.

This highly ambitious groundwork project restored straightened parts of the Lyvennet and Howe Beck back to a natural meandering state, for benefits to people and wildlife (See related article). The project is already reaping great success with over 20 salmon redds seen this week in the restored reach of the Lyvennet river at Maulds Meaburn.

The Atlantic Salmon had completed one of the most iconic migrations in the natural world, they travelled to the rich feeding grounds of Iceland and Greenland, before journeying some 3000 km home to the becks of their birth to become parents themselves!

The Lyvennet river channel was originally straightened for land management purposes and the increased energy in the river water leads to the river removing the smaller gravels necessary to support spawning. Furthermore, the lack of bends, associated scour and natural features, prevented the formation of vital pool and riffle habitats for a range of wildlife to thrive.

Reinstating the river back to its natural state has brought multiple benefits, including creating larger, diverse habitats for plants and animals to flourish. More natural, meandering rivers also help alleviate flood risk by slowing the flow of the river, and reducing bottle necks. This can delay both the height and timing of flood flows, benefiting communities downstream, without increasing flood risk upstream.

The Lyvennet scheme is part of a wider Cumbrian River Restoration Strategy that is tasked with restoring rivers back to a more natural condition, made possible by a partnership between the Environment Agency, Natural England and the Rivers Trusts across the county.
It is part of an ambitious package of significant restoration projects being delivered in the UK right now which all deliver improvements for ecology, habitat and local residents.

Charles Lowther, landowner at Barnskew and Meaburn Hall at Maulds Meaburn, said:

“Hopefully this scheme along with the other excellent work Eden Rivers Trust is doing will help reverse the trend of decline in spawning salmon in the river Eden.
“It has been amazing to see the river Lyvennet transformed in such a short space of time and to have evidence of spawning so soon after the restoration is fantastic news and confirmation that this improvement in habitat has measurable results.  We, the community in the area, are very proud of what ERT have achieved and wish to thank them very much.”

Simon Johnson, Director Eden Rivers Trust, said,

“The welcome return of spawning salmon to this section of restored river is wonderful news. Key to the success of the project has been the close co-operation and support we have received from farmers, landowners and partners.
However, we should remember that Eden salmon populations are in a state of decline. This project is part of ERT’s Saving Eden Strategy which will help to conserve this iconic species for future generations”.

Ben Bayliss, Environment Agency Programme Manager, said:

“It is fantastic news that following our river restoration project, already Atlantic Salmon have been recorded in the reach building redds.
However, while improving the river environment will help to improve salmon stocks, it is not enough on its own and we need to work together with anglers so we can review measures that would increase the number of salmon surviving to spawn.”

In early 2015, ERT will be organising a community tour of the restored reach of the Lyvennet including an opportunity to plant riverside trees. See www.edenriverstrust.org.uk for future announcements!

 

 

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SUMMER EVENING BY THE RIVER – BBQ Fundraiser FRIDAY 27th JUNE 2014

FRIDAY 27th JUNE 2014
Eden Rivers Trust and the
Salmon & Trout Association
(Cumbria Branch)

invite you to a

SUMMER EVENING BY THE RIVER – BBQ Fundraiser

at WARWICK HALL, WARWICK ON EDEN,
Nr CARLISLE

TICKETS £10.00 PER PERSON
Children under 12 free
(all proceeds to Eden Rivers Trust and Salmon and Trout Association)

                                                                                                                 6.00pm ONWARDS

ERT Charity BBQ FRIDAY 27th JUNE 2014

ERT Charity BBQ FRIDAY 27th JUNE 2014

Tickets available in advance from Eden Rivers Trust
(cheques payable to Eden Rivers Trust)

Eden Rivers Trust, Dunmail Building, Newton Rigg College, Penrith, Cumbria, CA11 0AH
Tel. 01768 866788 email: office@EdenRT.org
www.edenriverstrust.org.uk

The Trustees of the Eden Rivers Trust

Registered Charity Number 1123285

Eden Rivers Trust Restoring The Petteril – advertise apprenticeships

Volunteers using cut logs and branches to stabilise banks and create habitat for wildlife ERT Petteril Project
Volunteers using cut logs and branches to stabilise banks and create habitat for wildlife ERT Petteril Project

Great improvement is being seen on the River Petteril in north Cumbria thanks to local farmers working with Eden Rivers Trust to clean up the river and bring back wildlife.

The work within this Petteril Project will help to clean up the river and bring back the plants and animals which once thrived there. The River Petteril is a tributary of the Eden and runs for 25 miles from Penrith to Carlisle. Eden Rivers Trust has been working on a restoration project for the last four years with local farmers, the Environment Agency (EA) and Natural England’s Catchment Sensitive Farming Scheme.

More details

On many of the farms the Trust has helped to improve their yards and buildings in a way that reduces pollution reaching the river. For example new roofs have been built over manure stores and farm yards where cows collect to reduce the amount of dirty water reaching the river. Cement yards, drainage channels and guttering have all been installed to divert clean rain water away from dirty yard areas and to collect contaminated water so that it does not end up in the river.

Alison Reed, River Petteril Project Officer at Eden Rivers Trust, said, “The farmers in the area have been fantastic and are really interested in implementing the changes which are needed to improve the river. Often we find the discussions lead to a long term plan for the farm which benefits the environment, animal welfare and the farm business.”
Richard Wood, Project Manager, Environment Agency, said, “Our rivers support vital habitats and are improving but there is still more we can do. Using catchment data we have been able to target areas on the Petteril where this kind of work is of most value. It is great to see this all coming together with so many improvements being delivered on the ground.”

The current funding for the project is due to come to an end in March 2015 but there is still much work to be done. Eden Rivers Trust has a list of farms to work with along the Petteril during 2014.

Higher rainfall and flood events are becoming more frequent, creating problems with more water on the land and in the farm yard. This often needs a more focused investigation such as surface water plans produced by the Catchment Sensitive Farming Scheme which identify measures to tackle some of these problems.
Many of the tributaries of the Petteril such as Blackrack Beck are also prone to the build up of sediment in the river which makes it difficult for fish to live and breed there. The Trust is surveying the beck and investigating where the sediment is coming from. By working with the land owners it is hoped to solve the problems and reduce the amount of sediment in the river. Some landowners are already tackling the issue and looking at ways of improving the beck, for example by moving fences further away from the river, re-meandering the beck and planting trees.

 

This summer the Trust has worked with 14 farms to carry out work which will benefit the river.

The improvements include:

  • fencing over 2.5 km of river bank
  • planting 750 trees
  •  50 m of hedging.
  • A new farm bridge has been installed to keep cattle out of the river
  • bank reinforcement – cut logs and branches have been used along 300 m of eroding river to stabilise the banks and create ideal conditions for wildlife.

Why does the Petteril need restoration?
The Petteril needs help because it has deteriorated from being the best trout river in the Eden Valley in the 1940’s and 50’s to now being one of the poorest. This is due to a series of pollution incidents, more intensely farmed surroundings and the affects of the adjacent M6, A6 and railway line. All have led to a decline in the quality of the water and habitat and hence its wildlife.

 

New Bridge Over Lamb Beck

New Bridge Over Lamb Beck

As part of their Cherish Eden (Heritage Lottery project) Eden Rivers Trust has an apprentice scheme and are looking for 6 apprentices to start in March 2014.  Click here to view a copy of their advert please pass this on to anyone you know who may be interested in the scheme.
Eden Rivers Trust is a Company limited by guarantee number 06460807, registered in England and Wales.
and also a Registered Charity, Number 1123588.

Contact ERT’s Headquarters :

Tel: 01768 866788
office@edenriverstrust.org.uk
www.edenriverstrust.org.uk

Battle Against Invasive Species In Eden Valley Intensifies in 2013

Caldew School pupils clearing Himalayan balsam on the River Caldew at Dalston
Caldew School pupils clearing Himalayan balsam on the River Caldew at Dalston

(Source Eden Rivers Trust PR) A staggering 500 volunteers have spent more than 2000 hours helping Eden Rivers Trust battle against invading non-native species in the Eden Valley during 2013.  Without their help invaders such as signal crayfish and Himalayan balsam would go unchecked, causing problems for the animals and plants that naturally live in and alongside rivers and lakes.

In total the volunteers have contributed to:

  • clearing 16 miles (26 km) of riverbank and lake shore of balsam, along with 11.5 hectares (28 acres) of adjoining land;
  • managing 1100 m2 of newly discovered Japanese knotweed;
  • continuing the management of Japanese knotweed at sites managed in 2012;
  • removing 899 signal crayfish;
  • eradicating 300 giant hogweed plants which were sprayed, injected or dug up and composted.

The project has been funded by the Environment Agency and Natural England.

Paul Greaves, Invasive Species Officer at Eden Rivers Trust, said, “We are extremely grateful to all the volunteers involved because they have made a significant contribution to the conservation of the waterways and wildlife of the River Eden system.  We look forward to carrying on the good work in 2014!”

Many of the volunteers this year have been under 18 years old and it has been a fantastic opportunity for them to learn about invasive species and how they are introduced and transported.  They have also heard about the simple biosecurity steps that can be taken to reduce the chances of it happening.  As introduction is often through hitch hiking on equipment or clothes, when people move from one water body to another, the Checking Cleaning and Drying of equipment is essential to minimise the risk of carrying seeds, plant fragments or animals themselves to areas that they shouldn’t be taken.

Are you spreading invasive species via your water sports equipment and clothing? Invasive species can affect fish and other wildlife, restrict navigation, clog up propellers and be costly to manage. You can help protect the water sports you love by following three simple steps when you leave the water. Check, Clean and Dry your equipment before you visit the next body of water.
Are you spreading invasive species via your water sports equipment and clothing?
Invasive species can affect fish and other wildlife, restrict navigation, clog up propellers
and be costly to manage. You can help protect the water sports you love by following
three simple steps when you leave the water. Check, Clean and Dry your equipment before you visit the next body of water.

invasive_species_poster

Not all invasive species are introduced unintentionally.  Some are still sold in garden centres and escape from the gardens where they are planted.  One such plant is American skunk cabbage which has a large yellow flower, a pungent smell and can dominate wet boggy areas.  This plant has been identified in several areas locally this year and chemical treatment has been carried out to prevent it taking over, as it has done in other parts of the UK.

People are asked to bear this in mind when next buying plants for their garden or pond.  If any advice is required they can get in touch with the Trust or look at the “Be Plant Wise” campaign on the internet.

More Pictures

Riverside vegetation before members of the Rock Youth Project from Carlisle removing the invasive plant Himalayan balsam along the Eden at Lazonby
Riverside vegetation before members of the Rock Youth Project from Carlisle removing the invasive plant Himalayan balsam along the Eden at Lazonby

Before (above) and after (below) photos showing members of the Rock Youth Project from Carlisle removing the invasive plant Himalayan balsam along the Eden at Lazonby.

The same area along the Eden at Lazonby, after members of the Rock Youth Project from Carlisle had removed the invasive plant Himalayan balsam
The same area along the Eden at Lazonby, after members of the Rock Youth Project from Carlisle had removed the invasive plant Himalayan balsam

 

Kirkoswald Guides clearing Himalayan balsam along the River Eden at Lazonby
Kirkoswald Guides clearing Himalayan balsam along the River Eden at Lazonby
Another view of Kirkoswald Guides clearing Himalayan balsam along the River Eden at Lazonby
Another view of Kirkoswald Guides clearing Himalayan balsam along the River Eden at Lazonby
Inspira summer youth programme clearing Himalayan balsam along the River Caldew at Cummersdale Holmes, Carlisle
Inspira summer youth programme clearing Himalayan balsam along the River Caldew at Cummersdale Holmes, Carlisle
Blue Badge Tourist Guides removing Himalayan along the River Eden near Ousenstand Bridge, with giant hogweed in the foreground
Blue Badge Tourist Guides removing Himalayan along the River Eden near Ousenstand Bridge, with giant hogweed in the foreground

 The Trust relies on fund raising and grants to carry out this vital work.  It needs sponsorship and donations from individuals and businesses.  People can donate, become a Friend of Eden Rivers Trust or volunteer.

Contact details for the Trust are Eden Rivers Trust, Dunmail Building, Newton Rigg College, Penrith, Cumbria CA11 0AH, tel:  01768 866788 or email: office@edenriverstrust.org.

Further information on Eden Rivers Trust is available at www.edenriverstrust.org.uk.

Click below to download

Eden Rivers Trust Newletter Winter 2013

ERTrust A4 1pp Donation Form

Cherish Eden project gets £2 million from Heritage Lottery Fund

Native White-Clawed Crayfish EdeAccording to their press release today, Eden Rivers Trust has received a grant of £2 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the Cherish Eden project. The £2.5 million project aims to encourage local people and visitors to enjoy, cherish, and defend the River Eden in Cumbria.  The application was made by the Trust in partnership with a range of other local organisations and work on the project will start straight away.

Cherish Eden is a five year plan to help local communities look after their local river, provide an apprenticeship scheme for Cumbrian youngsters, create a series of new walks and cycle rides in the Eden Valley, and establish a media project about the River Eden.

The River Eden and its tributaries in north Cumbria are of national and international importance for their wildlife.  They are also of major economic importance to the area, providing drinking water, supporting agriculture and drawing locals and tourists alike to visit and undertake recreational activities.  They form a significant part of the landscape and beauty of the Eden Valley.

Family of ducks on River Lyvennet, a tributary of the Eden.

The first part of the project aims to get local people actively involved in looking after the river where they live.  Examples of activities include removing invasive plants, surveying river wildlife, helping to prevent pollution, protecting river banks and planting trees.  It will be the community groups and volunteers who make a real difference, supported by Eden Rivers Trust, the Environment Agency and the Cumbria Freshwater Non-native Species Initiative.  Those involved will enhance their environment, learn new skills and improve their own health and well-being.  Other organisations with these objectives will also be involved.

The apprenticeship scheme is aimed at teaching young people about rivers and their importance to man and the environment.   It will enable them to pursue careers in river conservation or other related subjects.  The core teaching will be provided by Newton Rigg College – part of Askham Bryan College – in a partnership project with Eden Rivers Trust and other neighbouring Rivers Trusts.

ducklings2

Several new walks and cycle rides associated with the River Eden will be established as part of the project.  These will create some beautiful new ways of exploring the Eden Valley countryside.  They will also tell people about its violent, historical invaders as well as its less violent, but still dangerous invaders of today – invasive animals and plants which are threatening our wildlife!  The walks and cycle rides will enable individuals, families, groups and schools to learn more about their local environment whilst enjoying the outdoors.  Eden Rivers Trust and Cumbria County Council Environment Team will be involved in the first instance, along with the Environment Agency and the Cumbria Freshwater Non-native Species Initiative.

A media project will consider all the activities associated with the river and come up with fresh, modern ways of telling people about them.  Local people will be able to contribute their thoughts, ideas and feelings about what the river means to them and this will be showcased through a range of media including a series of short films, a book and an exhibition at Tullie House Museum. There will also be a touring exhibition throughout the 5 year project which will show the progress of the project and enable people throughout the catchment to submit their contributions. The aim is to enthuse local people about the river in a partnership project between Eden Rivers Trust, Carlisle College, Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery Trust and Cumbria County Council Carlisle Archive Centre.

Simon Johnson, Eden Rivers Trust Director, said, “We are delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund has given us this grant. This is the result of two years of very hard planning, fundraising and partnership building work to secure £528,000 of committed resource over the five years of the project which we require to match the HLF grant.  Our 2013 Charity Auction on October 19th is just one of a number of fundraising initiatives we have in place to provide match funding over the 5 year programme. The grant is of strategic importance in terms of planning a future for the river in a way that has wide ranging social and environmental benefits.  The project will be working with a range of partners and will act as an engine of change to drive outcomes for communities and those organisations supporting them throughout the Eden Valley. The Eden is a beautiful river teeming with wildlife and is a vital part of our landscape and economy.  It is great to know that we will be able to get local people involved in protecting it for future generations.”

Wes Johnson, Principal, Newton Rigg College, said, “We are delighted to be working so closely with the Eden Rivers Trust on this scheme. It is not only a great opportunity to strengthen our links with the organisation, but helps support the next generation of river conservationists”.

Sara Hilton, Head of HLF North West, said: “The River Eden and its environs are hugely precious parts of our natural heritage, widely recognised for their rare habitats and species. This exemplary project is designed to engage local communities by providing them with the knowledge of how to maintain the landscape and get actively involved with its care and guardianship.  I can’t think of a better use of HLF money than to protect this area for future generations to enjoy.”

River Eden at Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria. Photo and copyright C.Paxton

River Eden at Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria. Photo and copyright C.Paxton 

Further information on Eden Rivers Trust is available at www.edenriverstrust.org.uk.