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Bailiff Guidance: 2010

Conwy River System Information Sign

Map of the River Conwy indicating salmon and sea trout areas.

Map of the River Lledr indicating salmon and sea trout areas

Conwy Valley Fisheries & Conservation Association

Environmental damage by ‘adventure activity’ on rivers

This Association exists to look after the interests of the Conwy valley fisheries generally, but has recently come to prominence for its work in attempting to come to reasonable and sensible agreements with the formal canoeing organisations and their representatives. The Association is determined to protect the spawning areas, redds, of the migratory fish species from irreparable damage by canoeists and gorge walkers who frighten potentially spawning fish from the redds and disturb the gravel and therefore eggs they contain in areas where fish have managed to spawn. The redds must be protected and left undisturbed during the spawning and hatching seasons. Please register your support by either voting using the option on the left or downloading the signature form at the bottom of this page, your support and encouragement will be greatly appreciated.

The Association is not for one moment suggesting that canoeists and others who enjoy the pleasures of our beautiful waterways are wilfully causing serious environmental damage, the damage they do is most probably because they are totally unaware of the environmental sensitivity of areas were they go to enjoy themselves. We would ask all who enjoy our rivers to follow this campaign to learn how to avoid environmental damage on our rivers. Thank you

Each year salmon and trout spawn in the upper reaches of river systems and tributaries. Salmon and sea trout will also spawn in the lower reaches of rivers where the gravel and flow conditions are suitable.

Spawning for all salmon and trout takes place between October and the end of March although the peak activity takes place between November and January. The exact timing depends on the river’s location, the flow and temperature. Spawning often takes place in and around the same location each year. The eggs develop in the gravel until the young fish, known as fry, hatch out and emerge from the gravel in April.

Like all wild animals fish can be scared by the activities of people. The impact of this disturbance will depend on its location, severity and timing.

Eggs in the gravel can be damaged or destroyed if the gravel area (known as the redd) is stepped on, disturbed or covered with silt. For the Conwy the risks are highest between October and the end of January and lower from February to the end of March.

It is an offence under the Salmon & Freshwater Fisheries Act 1975 to willfully disturb any spawn or spawning fish, or any bed, bank or shallow on which any spawn or spawning fish may be.

You can find out if you are on a river where spawning takes place and if your activities may cause disturbance by referring to the Conwy salmon and trout spawning map. For more detail on specific spawning areas talk to the local Environment Agency fisheries officer for the Conwy by phoning 08708 506 506.

Salmon, sea trout and brown trout spawning areas have been recorded onto a map to help inform recreational water users about the areas of river that may be sensitive to disturbance during the spawning season.

To view the map click the button below:

To view the Environment Agency advice & guidelines clich the button below:

Campaign Background Documentation/Progress

Letter to Assembly Member – Jane Davidson & Chair of the Scrutiny Commitee – Mick Bates

Response from Dr Viginia Hawkins – Clerk to the Sustainability Commitee

Statement from the Angling Trust on Inland Navigation
National Assembly Petitions Commitee – Report on Access Along Inland Water
Federation Of Welsh Anglers – Sustainability Committee Consultation Response

 Click here to view the list of consultation responses to the Access to Inland Water Inquiry