An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

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Cray Stalker
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Cray Stalker » Sat Nov 02, 2019 2:52 pm

DaceAce wrote:
Sat Nov 02, 2019 9:30 am
The main change to the ecology of the Avon in the last 10 years has been the cessation of mechanical weed cutting in 2010 and this factor alone has had far more impact on roach (and other species) numbers than the effects of the ARP. The summer volume of the Avon below Salisbury has more than doubled, carriers have depth again, water temperature is higher and there is far more cover for the roach in summer, some of these factors to the detriment of salmon.
:Thumb: :fishing1:

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Ally
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Ally » Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:30 am

DaceAce wrote:
Sat Nov 02, 2019 9:30 am
The main change to the ecology of the Avon in the last 10 years has been the cessation of mechanical weed cutting in 2010 and this factor alone has had far more impact on roach (and other species) numbers than the effects of the ARP. The summer volume of the Avon below Salisbury has more than doubled, carriers have depth again, water temperature is higher and there is far more cover for the roach in summer, some of these factors to the detriment of salmon.
Yeah what I always thought weird about arp is if the river couldnt support the fish how would shoving a load more in help.

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Tengisgol
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Tengisgol » Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:27 pm

Ally wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:30 am
DaceAce wrote:
Sat Nov 02, 2019 9:30 am
The main change to the ecology of the Avon in the last 10 years has been the cessation of mechanical weed cutting in 2010 and this factor alone has had far more impact on roach (and other species) numbers than the effects of the ARP. The summer volume of the Avon below Salisbury has more than doubled, carriers have depth again, water temperature is higher and there is far more cover for the roach in summer, some of these factors to the detriment of salmon.
Yeah what I always thought weird about arp is if the river couldnt support the fish how would shoving a load more in help.
I think (and I’m no expert) the main thrust was based upon the fact that the fish surveys were showing that the roach populations in many reaches (i.e. mill to mill) had crashed to below critical levels - in other words, even if other factors like cormorant predation* were removed, there were simply not enough roach left to regenerate the population naturally (given survivability rates).

What the ARP did was to encourage the roach that were left to spawn on the artificial boards and removed that spawn to the hatcheries and growing on ponds. That meant that the survivability if the hatchling roach went from (say) one in one hundred to ninety percent. They then successfully raised those roach to return them to the river in their thousands. Repeating that and then with those returned roach spawning and regenerating the population once again had the springboard to create sustainable populations again.

I suspect that the reality is that this has been a combination of the ARP and numerous other factors including those mentioned. Whatever the truth, and we’ll never know, reality is that you can go to the Avon this weekend and dream of catching roach again like this ten ouncer - look at the shoulders on that:

Image

*considerable action has been taken on this front along the valley, as I understand it.
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GregF
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by GregF » Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:02 pm

Lovely to see all the hard work paying off in the shape of these superb roach. Those involved must be justifiably proud of their achievements.
"Give up haste and ambition, close your mouth, only then will you comprehend the spirit of Tao" - Lao Tze

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Perchbobber46
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Perchbobber46 » Tue Nov 12, 2019 8:59 pm

Well said Greg great job 👍

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Olly
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Olly » Wed Nov 13, 2019 12:59 pm

Ally - the river could and did support roach - but in severely decreased numbers.

Britford, Longford, Somerley, Hale, Winkton, etc all had 2lbers before the restocking but perhaps with only a few - very few in some areas - being caught.

The restocking, plus other factors, has replenished and increased the breeding stock to the state it is now. Viewing the spawning boards from the beginning will show this increase.

Whatever - the roach are back and thereby lies a lesson to all river managers regarding the positiveness of doing just that! Restocking.

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Lea Dweller
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Lea Dweller » Wed Nov 13, 2019 1:29 pm

I absolutely agree, ANY help that nature can be given to restore or boost fish numbers should be welcomed! :Hat:

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Tengisgol
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Tengisgol » Wed Nov 13, 2019 5:40 pm

Olly wrote:
Wed Nov 13, 2019 12:59 pm
Whatever - the roach are back and thereby lies a lesson to all river managers regarding the positiveness of doing just that! Restocking.
With the caveat being that you can’t just restock with any old roach, or even roach from adjoining stillwaters, because they won’t ‘sync’ with the indigenous remaining roach and - as Trevor/ARP have proven - stocked roach from a source other than the river itself will in the long term have a detrimental impact as they are genetically diverse. They can actually crash the population long term, despite what might appear to be a short term ‘boom’.
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Dave Burr
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Dave Burr » Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:14 pm

A mate of mine has just reported his catch of 27 roach from Britford today to 1lb 9oz. 6 more over a pound and all but three needed the landing net. The Avon really is coming good.

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Olly
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Re: An Avon roach (and a visit to the Avon Roach Project)

Post by Olly » Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:48 pm

The Kings Weir fishery is now rearing Lea barbel on a small scale in tanks. Perhaps it may catch on with other fish and fishery managers.

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