Knaresborough Anglers tackling balsam

Posted on July 10, 2017

Knaresborough Anglers tackling balsam

Knaresborough Anglers were recipients of a WTT workshop (led by Gareth Pedley) supported by the Yorkshire Water Biodiversity Fund. It was decided that the follow-up bursary (which the club match-funded) would be put towards the purchase of Stihl brushcutters and appropriate PPE so that the club membership could instigate a serious programme to tackle the invasive Himalayan balsam along the banks of the River Nidd.

Stuart Gregory reports that they have just completed five work days specifically targeting the balsam and have removed a huge amount from the banks over a two and a half mile stretch. The Knaresborough Anglers Committee is committed to continuing a programme of balsam reduction in the coming years, well aware that there is no quick fix and that success in the future will depend on doggedness, continued investment and working with a variety of key partners and the local landowners from whom they have had excellent support.

As well as tackling the balsam issue, Stuart also says that the club will continue to work through the recommendations highlighted in their WTT Advisory Visit report.  The willow whips already planted seem to have taken in the first phase of bank stabilisation and members are being supportive in leaving large woody debris that previously would have been hauled out. Anecdotally, the number of trout caught this year has improved and there are numerous fry being reported. The club has even managed to get Ripley Beck written in as one of the five priority tributaries for action in the EA’s current three year plan for the River Nidd because of its failure to meet the Water Framework Directive standards. Great work!

Great Yorkshire Show

Posted on July 09, 2017

The Great Yorkshire Show is on this week (Tues-Thurs) and Jonny Grey will be flying the flag for WTT.

Do drop by for a chat - he will be on a stand in the Country Pursuits section, alongside the Salmon & Trout Conservation UK West Yorks branch and Bradford City AA

Rhug (North Wales) Country Fair this weekend

Posted on July 04, 2017

Visit the Rhug country fair this weekend (7/8 July) and meet Noel Hulmston, who has a stand at the fair.Noel is a fishing guide and a much valued supporter of the Wild Trout Trust. 

Rhug is between Wrexham and Bala. Full details here.

The Sad Passing of International Salmon Conservationaist Mr Orri Vigfússon

Posted on July 03, 2017

The North Atlantic Salmon Fund (NASF) announces with great sadness, the passing of our founder and Chairman Mr. Orri Vigfússon. 

Mr Vigfússon succumbed to lung cancer at Iceland's national hospital in Reyjavik on July 1st 2017 only nine short of his 75th birthday. Mr. Vigfússon has for 27 years, tirelessly fought for the survival and restoration of the wild Atlantic salmon through the North Atlantic Salmon Fund earning him the admiration days and respect of environmentalists all over the world.  He was recognised internationally for his vital conservation work and was awarded with numerous distinguished awards.  He is survived by his wife Unnur Kristinsdóttir, 2 children and 3 granddaughters.

The North Atlantic Salmon Fund, NASF, is an international coalition of voluntary private sector conservation groups who have come together to restore stocks of wild Atlantic salmon to their historic abundance.

Orri was a tireless campaigner for Atlantic salmon, and a great firend to the WTT. We will miss him.

WTT Conservation Awards applications close 28 July 2017

Posted on June 28, 2017

You have until 28 July 2017 to submit your application for the WTT Conservation Awards 2017, supported by Thames Water.

These prestigious awards are in three categories of small, medium and large-scale projects, with a splendid trophy and the adulation of your peers for all categories, plus a £1000 cheque for each winner of the small and medium-scale projects. The Awards ceremony, a great fun evening, is in London on 17 October.

The application process is slick, with the form quick and easy to complete; short-listed applicants will face a subsequent ‘phone interview with the judges, made up of staff from WTT and the River Restoration Centre. 

3-Fly Competition fundraiser raises £6850

Posted on June 18, 2017

Now in it's eight successful year, the 3-Fly competition organised by Neil Mundy goes from strength to strength. This year an amazing £6850 was raised in aid of the Wild Trout Trust.

The venue for was, as usual, Meon Springs Trout Fishery in Hampshire, who host the day with exceptional professionalism: lots of fish (even on a roasting, sunny day) and an absolutely perfect venue for stillwater fishing and for lots of socialising.

For the second year running  the overall competition winner was  Neil Mundy. Neil took away a splendid trophy and a new rod, very kindly donated by Sage.

Electric fishing in Dorset - volunteers needed 17-18 June

Posted on June 14, 2017

Asa White, a PhD student at the University of Brighton researching the impact of watercress farming on fish, needs some help electric fishing in the River Crane, Dorset this coming weekend, 17 & 18 June.No previous experience is needed as Asa will train volunteers.A lift from Brighton or Hastings is a possibility, as is a pitch on a nearby campsite. If you’re keen, contact Asa on or 07738 056114. 

More on Asa’s project on the WTT website here.


Generous donation from Bradford City AA

Posted on June 06, 2017

We were extremely delighted to receive a generous donation ‘to support the Wild Trout Trust in its vital work’ from Bradford City Angling Association. They recently held an Open Day on the River Aire at Gargrave which was well attended by local clubs and their members, rivers trusts and associated organisations, and even one of the WTT Vice Presidents, Malcolm Greenhalgh.

Our very own Jonny Grey was on hand to demonstrate some of the sterling work that the BCAA Fly Section has been doing to reinstate and improve habitat along reaches of the Aire (in partnership with the Environment Agency and their local Fisheries Officer, Pete Turner, via the Fishery Improvement Programme).

Phil Bailey, the BCAA Fly Secretary, had done an excellent job of organising an interesting line up of fly-casting and fly-fishing demonstrations, for old and young kids alike! Thanks are due to Phil, to Jim Munden (the President), and to the rest of the very supportive BCAA Committee for considering us.    

Deveron Trout Festival report

Posted on June 06, 2017

Deveron Trout Festival report

In 2016 Wild Trout Trust were approached by the Deveron, Bogey and Isla Charitable Rivers Trust (DBICRT) to sit on the advisory panel for the development of their new fishery management plan, which is an honour that we duly accepted.

This role offers WTT a great opportunity to support the trust in conservation and promotion of wild trout in an area of Scotland where 'resident' trout have historically been considered a poor cousin (or worse) to migratory salmonids. Fortunately these views are not shared by the DBICRT and they take the conservation of all their native fish species very seriously.

Amongst the initiatives by the DBICRT to develop and improve of their fisheries, the trust wanted to reinvigorate their annual trout festival, an event in which a large number of beats on the River Deveron are made available for trout fishing for the weekend so that anglers can get affordable, easy access to the river, in exchange for providing the trust with length, weight and scale data for the fish that they catch.

Up at the apex with ferox

Posted on June 05, 2017

Not content with just completing his PhD in Evolutionary Ecology at the University of Glasgow as a part of the EU funded IBIS project, Martin Hughes has also recently founded Inspiring Ecology to meet the demands of local schools requesting opportiunities for ecological fieldwork and practical training. And next he's off to New South Wales to conduct outreach and community engagement.... streuth!

So, we are really glad that amongst all of this, he has managed to summarise the whole of his PhD on ferox, a fish he became instantly hooked upon, for us over on the WTT blog. Check out the further links to his other pages, papers and video....

Job Opportunity: Wild Trout Trust Assistant Conservation Officer

Posted on June 02, 2017

Salary £15,000 + pension contribution, mileage expenses and holiday entitlement of 5 weeks/year; initial fixed-term, 12-month contract.

The Wild Trout Trust (WTT) is a registered charity dedicated to the practical conservation of the iconic brown trout, a living indicator of the health of the landscape around us. Find out more of what we do on this website

WTT works with anyone interested in the conservation of wild trout, rivers and their wildlife, including other NGOs, fishing clubs, farmers, riparian owners, community groups, academia and government agencies.

Smolt Conference Videos Available

Posted on June 01, 2017

WTT supported an international Conference in Berwick in March 2017 that considered challenges to and management of salmon and sea trout smolts, organised by the Atlantic Salmon Trust and Tweed Foundation. Whilst much of the talk was on salmon, some papers considered sea trout and there was much to learn for us trout people from those papers whose focus was on salmon. Excellent videos of all the talks are now available through AST and the Tweed Foundation: Smolt Conference - All video presentations now available to view

Viewing is highly recommended. To highlight a few, Johan Hojesjo gave an interesting talk on sea trout in Scandinavia, one snippet from Swedish studies being that trout are genetically differentiated into fjord groupings, rather than by specific river, providing great adaptability for fish to be able to use any of the rivers flowing into a particular fjord. Catch the detail of sea trout smolts migrating downstream with roach, presumably to maximise chances of survival. Niall Gauld tracked sea trout smolts around Loch Linnhe and showed their propensity to stay within sea lochs, making them vulnerable to development in those lochs (e.g. salmon farms). Niels Jepsen spoke on the impact of cormorant predation on salmon smolts (and other fish) in Danish rivers, producing some incredible (and terrifying) figures on the scale of the impact. His studies have shown 70% losses of a smolt run at one (redundant) weir and the effect of cold winters, when freezing of shorelines and lakes pushes cormorants onto rivers – some of his video footage simply has to be seen to be believed.

Upper Itchen signal crayfish

Posted on May 30, 2017

Disastrous news from Dr Ben Rushbrooke at Hants &IOW Wildlife Trust that signal crayfish have been found at the very top of the River Itchen, at the upper limit of the known distribution of native white-clawed crayfish on the Alre, placing the entire subpopulation of the native species in very real and immediate risk.

Ben and colleagues are planning action but it is a timely reminder for anglers of the need for biosecurity: CHECK, CLEAN & DRY all your gear after every trip.

More info on biosecurity on the WTT website:

Friends of the River Worth group

Posted on May 30, 2017

Friends of the River Worth group

Philip Sheridan, committee member on the West Yorks Branch of Salmon & Trout Conservation UK (S&TCUK West Yorks) has gained agreement from Keighley BIG Local to draw down seed funding to set up a Friends of River Worth group.

The River Worth runs through the town of Keighley. Each red circle highlights a key crossing point. Big Local Area in blue.

The River Worth runs as a green ribbon through the centre of Keighley acting as a green corridor for wildlife. It might not look all that pretty in places but it has an abundance of wild trout, grayling, dippers, kingfishers and riverflies.

Looking upstream toward the A650 bypass bridge

Philip has monitored water quality on the River Worth since 2013 when he set up and coordinated a group of Riverfly Monitors on the River Aire and its tributaries as part of the work of the S&TCUK West Yorks ongoing commitment to help look after the region's rivers and streams.

Heptageniidae nymphs from a riverfly sample on the River Worth

James Carr

Posted on May 24, 2017

It is a great sadness to the fisheries world that the death of James Carr has been announced, aged 71.

James was a former chairman of Salmon & Trout Conservation UK and a founding trustee of the Eden Rivers Trust, among his many roles in UK fisheries management. Deep condolences to James’ wife and children from all at WTT.