East Coast River Trust gets significant funding to improve life for migratory fish and eel

The River Vartry.

Myles BuchananWicklow People

EAST Coast River Trust has been awarded €114,855 as part of the Inland Fisheries Salmon and Sea Trout Rehabilitation, Conservation and Protection Fund.

The competitive fund supports sustainable development initiatives to ensure native salmon and sea trout can survive and thrive, and overcome challenges they face in the wild. A total of 24 projects nationwide are set to benefit from this fund.

The East Coast River Trust was awarded €114,855 for a major fish barrier removal scheme to help improve river connectivity for migratory fish and eel

The East Wicklow Rivers Trust formed in 2019 from a core group of people who had come together with concerns about the impact of water flow on the Vartry river. The Trust covers an area of over 1300 square kilometres, stretching from Bray to Arklow.

Funding was also approved for surveillance measures, using environmental DNA, to monitor the presence of invasive pink salmon species in Irish rivers nationwide.

Announcing the projects, the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan TD, said: “Our rivers are like the nature and biodiversity arteries of the country. Since the 1980s we have seen a significant deterioration in their water quality, putting our freshwater fish and their habitats under considerable stress.

“It is crucial to protect and futureproof our natural resources and this funding helps to do that. It is particularly encouraging to see applicants to the scheme taking on the stewardship over their local natural amenities.”