Afon Crychddwr, near Llanllyfni: Rock Ramp Fish Pass
As the 2013 salmon and sea trout spawning season gets under way, anglers and
conservationists are eagerly looking for signs of success of a project to improve access by
migratory fish to a Gwynedd stream as the result of the recent removal of a major obstruction.
The project, on the Afon Crychddwr, near Llanllyfni, involved the creation of a rock ramp
natural fishway to replace a concrete slipway which had historically presented a problem for
fish trying to access spawning grounds upstream of this location.
After diverting the flow of the stream through pipes to by-pass the site, the work involved the use of boulders to create a series of shallow cascades with resting pools between each one.A number of oak baffles were also fitted at the head of the ramp and into a tunnel under a railway bridge to improve water level and help fish negotiate what was previously a smooth surface with a shallow water flow that was difficult to negotiate under most conditions. The project was jointly organised by Afonydd Cymru and the Clwyd, Conwy & GwyneddRivers Trust and is part of the Environmental Improvements to Sustain Welsh Fisheries project (EISWF). The cost of the project was £22k with 75% of the finance being made available by the European Fisheries Fund and the remaining 25% match funding coming from the Welsh Government.
Commenting about the project, Afonydd Cymru project officer for North Wales, RichardWhite, said: “The work, which took two weeks to complete, changed the profile of the river over a length of about 30m easing the gradient over a height difference of more than 2m.Now that the work has been completed, it will make access to about three kilometres of spawning ground much easier for native brown trout and migratory fish.”Expressing his delight about the scheme, Roger Thomas, chairman of the Clwyd, Conwy& Gwynedd Rivers Trust, said: “This is the Trust’s first major project in Gwynedd since it expanded its activities into the county earlier this year and I believe it demonstrates the Trust’s commitment to get involved with strategic environmental projects in the region. ”Congratulating both organisations on completing the project, Dr Robin Parry, chairman of the Seiont, Gwyrfai & Llyfni Angling Association. Said: “The trust’s recent expansion to coverGwynedd is welcome. This work will boost fish spawning in Afon Llyfni. Local anglers will be encouraged by this contribution to aquatic habitat restoration and will look forward to working with the Clwyd, Conwy & Gwynedd Rivers’ Trust and Afonydd Cymru on similar environmental projects in the future.”
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