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Reactive Monitoring Projects

As well as routine fisheries monitoring, Loughs Agency carries out reactive surveys to collect information about specific issues and challenges.

In recent years, we have conducted reactive monitoring in response to a pollution incident, major flooding and a rainbow trout escape.

August 2017 Floods

In August 2017, areas of the Foyle catchment experienced unprecedented rainfall and flooding. Landslides in the uplands moved huge quantities of silt, peat, debris and other materials onto the floodplains. Bridges were swept away and extensive damage was caused to housing, roads, agricultural land and other important infrastructure.

Continuing climate change means such events may become more common. Changes must be made to minimise their impact. Giving rivers space, reconnecting them to their historic floodplains, and planting native trees in our uplands and riparian corridors are essential responses.

Loughs Agency’s partnerships with the Woodland Trust and other non-statutory and statutory bodies are now more relevant than ever.


Escaped Rainbow Trout

A significant number of rainbow trout escaped from a fish farm during the 2017 floods. We launched a co-ordinated response which included:

  • urging anglers to report all catches of rainbow trout to Loughs Agency
  • liaising with angling bodies, the farm operator and the Regulator
  • commissioning an external report
  • trialling boat-based electrofishing and fyke netting as a recovery method
  • analysing the size, condition and feeding behaviour of captured rainbow trout
  • conducting a rod-based survey to monitor the presence of rainbow trout during the annual closed season.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

21 April 1926 to 8 September 2022