When news happens, text LT and your photos and videos to 80360. Or contact us by email or phone.
Burnley river slowed to help brown trout
A MAJOR project has been completed to slow down the pace of the river in the middle of Burnley – and give brown trout a fighting chance.
Freshwater fish navigating the town centre channels were becoming increasingly exhausted as the current flowed at more than two metres per second.
But a seven-week engineering project, as part of Burnley’s £1million Urban Rivers Enhancement Scheme (URES), has come to their rescue.
Originally, sewage and other waste products zipped away on the waterway, during the Industrial Revolution, and little had changed until recently.
Today this may not be the case, but the river had to be diverted while a solution was found.
Project contracts manager John Milne said: “The fast, smooth, straight flows were a serious problem for trout wanting to migrate up the river to spawn.
“The trout become exhausted fighting the fast flows and had no areas to rest up.
“These fast flows also wash all sediments and gravels downstream, with the result that there is minimal invertebrate life in the existing narrow, shallow channels.”
The 10-strong team of contractors, using three excavators, created a new right hand channel, for the water to flow along, while constructing a replacement watercourse.
Once the new channel had been completed, the temporary blockwork could be removed, leaving a wider river, complete with pools and riffles for the fish to rest.
Mr Milne added: “Within a week of diverting the water, silt and gravel had started to accumulate in the bottom of the pools, and a 12-inch long brown trout was seen moving from one pool to the next one upstream.”
Comments are closed on this article.