The COMPASS project was delighted to welcome Leanne Massey, @SEUPB director, on a recent visit to the Shimna River in Newcastle, Co Down to learn more about the salmon and sea trout tagging work for this EU INTERREG-funded project. This study is being undertaken by the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute and Inland Fisheries Ireland in a number of rivers on the North – East coast of Ireland to track salmon and sea trout a on their previously unrecorded migrations at sea .
To tag the fish, first you need to catch them. COMPASS scientists have been supported throughout the project by able volunteers from the Shimna River Angling Club, who recognise the importance of this scientific research for the conservation of stocks in these rivers for future generations. Dr Richard Kennedy said “The data we have been able to gather from this work has already demonstrated some interesting and hitherto unknown behaviour in the migratory patterns of these fish. We hope that the work being done today will unlock yet more new information. By combining the results of our research with COMPASS Oceanographic work we aim to find out more about why the fish use particular migration routes and feeding areas, and link the fish with environmental information in models designed to support management in a cross-border network of Marine Protected Areas (MPA).