River Ayr unfishable today… on many beats. At prime time of the year for angling and with a good run on the water and plenty of salmon about, what could be worse news for anglers and angling clubs?

Many anglers must have faced this disappointment when they turned up at the river this morning. From Catrine downstream at least as far as Failford was affected early on following very localised heavy rain overnight. The pollution was travelling downstream and I expect by mid day, most of the river was affected.

Bogged Burn meeting the River Ayr. The Ayr was running clear and at a height that more than a few salmon could still be moving.

So what caused the problem and what exactly was the problem?

The Bogend Burn at Catrine is a small agricultural tributary and it was in spate this morning. It enters the Ayr at the Institute footbridge in Catrine. The silt load from this burn quickly mixed with the Ayr which was running clear and the whole river was discoloured as a result. The cause of this siltation?…. well it appears to be livestock poaching of the water margins at several points within the Bogend Burn sub catchment.

This area has been a problem previously and ART has reported it to SEPA yet no improvements have yet been made. This needs sorted.

This section of the burn appears to have been the main source of this mornings problems. The drone allows us to quickly pinpoint issues before they pass. Details have been passed to SEPA and we expect action to improve the situation.

Watch the video clip below that we shot this morning.  It is also posted on our Facebook and the Ayr DSFB web site. It is shocking that this type of pollution continues after years of SEPA’s ‘Diffuse Pollution Initiative’. If that isn’t bad enough, it is shocking that we already are aware that a Club had to turn away visiting anglers who had come to fish bring with them vital income for the club.

The River Ayr meeting the Lugar Water on Machine Ballochmyle Club stretch this morning. It’s no wonder they had to turn anglers away. There wasn’t a single car in the car park when I visited at 10.30am

ART reported the incident to SEPA and asked them to investigate but more importantly to get the problem sorted.

Senior Biologist and Trust manager, Stuart Brabbs is concerned that the Bogend Burn hardly produces any trout or salmon anymore. “It’s been in such poor condition for so long now that salmon rarely enter it. It should be a prime producer of salmon and sea trout yet is failing terribly. SEPA has to address these problems and allow the burn to again become an important part of the river system”  he is quoted as saying.

At a time when clubs are struggling to survive, they can ill afford to lose members and visiting anglers through problems like this. We expect the River Ayr DSFB will be keen to discuss this event and hopefully take whatever action they can to rectify the situation. ART will support them I’m every way possible.

Here’s the link to the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kL6dB0simYw&t=293s


I also met two disgruntled anglers at Barskimming bridge and interviewed one of them. Here’s his comments https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2v_y4j9ns2A



Over 12,00 viewers saw our post about this pollution through our Facebook pages.

This blog page reaches over 24000 anglers and readers per quarter. Between this blog, Facebook and Twitter, we have managed to bring this pollution to the attention of many many people.The power of social media will hopefully lead to progress.