After a few days off, I visited Catrine Dam yesterday morning expecting to see Anderson’s work complete as I was under the impression that the contractor had planned to work last weekend to ensure they made the most of the dry weather. They did, but not on Anderson’s instead piling behind the upper dam. I hope this won’t turn out to be a mistake because in my book, you make hay when the sun shines as that can be a rare occasion!
Anyway, joiners were busy shuttering the left side of Anderson’s and they planned to pour concrete later on Tuesday. I left them to it after discussing the current programme of works and timescales with the site agent. A meeting is arranged for next Monday to discuss the final works required at Anderson’s below the current water levels. This will mean a further drop in levels and a fish rescue has been agreed on the morning of the works. At least this time we can be well organised. There was a salmon swimming around the pool yesterday morning and the contractor agreed to freshen the water when I was there and quickly arranged for more flow to be sent through the fish pass.
I revisited this evening and sure enough the walls and base at Anderson’s are complete. That just leaves the lip at the face of this weir to be poured and the work below the water line to be done next week. This evening there has been an attempt to poach salmon in the fish pass and bailiffs interrupted a group of youths that had blocked the ladder with boards taken from the site. Contractors left at 5.00pm and the bailiffs arrived at 7.00pm. At some point during the two hours in between, the pass was blocked. Bailiffs saw a fish in one of the chambers and will attempt to move it to safety later this evening. I presume this fish had been stuck in Anderson’s and decided to move upstream when flow was restored at the end of the day’s work. I attended around 9.30pm and the pass was running unhindered and there was no sign of anyone near the fish pass or site so perhaps they have been adequately deterred.
Although the dam works are not complete it is certainly going some way to eleviate the problem that there has been for years at catrine at least the fish haven’t got a major jump as they have done in the past next step hopefully get sorn dam sorted then the Ayr will be complete
Richard, the height at Anderson’s will be exactly the same as it was before, once completed. The difference is that the gap is wider and thus the velocity of water will be reduced. A new lip will be added to the weir in the next few days with a radius edge which will reduce air in the flow and therefore improve salmon swimming ability. The finished depth below the waterline will be approximately 1.8m. Salmon will be able to develop sufficient swimming speed to swim up the flow or if necessary, leap from close into the falls and this should improve their success rate. At most mid to low flows, salmon should be able to swim rather than leap this weir in future. I expect fewer fish will be seen going over Anderson’s.
Next week the underwater deepened area will be lined with concrete to prevent scour. We will be working with the contractor to protect the fish during these last stages of works to Anderson’s.
Work to Sorn Weir is due within the year. The fish pass there will need upgraded. That would then leave Stair Dam where plans to reopen the hydro scheme are afoot. I will keep readers updated of progress at both these weirs as information becomes available.
always talk about the ayr eh, what about the lugar, salmon getting poached at dalblair as we speak
I understand your concerns but Ayrshire Rivers Trust are in no way connected to Bailiffing. I will let the Bailiffs know about your concerns at Dalblair. We report on what is going on that we are involved with and what is of interest to others. Whilst currently we are reporting heavily on Catrine, there is great interest surrounding these works and people rely on us for updates.
Thanks stuart, keep up the good work.
when will the new salmon fishery board website be up and running