Stonbury are immensely proud to be supporting our clients across the UK at such a crucial time and have been designated as 'key workers' by DEFRA and the UK water utility companies. Our teams are working tirelessly to help secure and maintain drinking water supplies, ensuring clean and safe drinking water is provided without interruption to critical services such as our hospitals as well as the general public. Now more than ever, the safety and wellbeing of our staff is of the utmost importance and we have adapted our safe working practices to ensure social distancing precautions are in place and that the correct hygiene practices are being followed. Making safety is our priority, and we endeavour to make sure everyone at Stonbury goes home safe to their family.
Fish and habitat surveys play an essential part in monitoring the status of the river environment. The purpose of the surveys is to collect data of fish species composition and abundance to help better understand the fish populations present. The surveys allow habitats to be identified, protected and enhanced for those species.
Before works could begin, all relevant applications and licences were put in place, including an application for authorisation from the Environment Agency, which allowed the use of fishing instruments other than Rod and Line (FR2).
The stretch of river was divided into three reaches and each reach was netted off at both ends to stop fish movement upstream. The operators slowly walked alongside the boat, which was fitted with two electrodes and a cathode. The fish were caught sequentially and held in the aerated tank before each fish was measured and returned to the water.
The data was recorded and broken down into the location, species of fish, the number caught and the size. Once all sections were complete, the equipment was disassembled, removed from site and disinfected to ensure biosecurity.
The data was evaluated and recommendations were passed onto the client, as to how they could enhance the surroundings and habitat. The data will remain as a baseline for the specific stretch of river that was surveyed and will help to monitor the environmental conditions in the future.