The Tweed Foundation
for the good of the river
You can help us in our work to maintain a healthy river by using the form below to tell us if you spot anything in the list. As part of the Tweed’s bio-security planning we share information with the Tweed Forum, which act on reports of invasive aquatic animal plants within the catchment.
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*Telephone Number :
*Email Address :
I have seen :
New structure or channel
Blocked Fish Pass
Crayfish: Signal Crayfish were introduced ponds in the Ettrick, Teviot, Till, middle Tweed and Whiteadder catchments in the 1990s in the mistaken belief that they were good to eat and could be farmed. These ventures failed (as they have done wherever tried in the UK) but escapes from the ponds in the Ettrick and Till catchments have got into the main rivers, where they are spreading.
They are ferocious predators that can reach densities of up to 400 per square metre, and are a risk to trout and salmon fry, particularly to the youngest stages which cannot swim well. They can also burrow up to a metre deep into soft banks and undermine them, risking their collapse.
Spawning Lamprey: The Tweed is a European Special Area of Conservation (SAC) for all three species of British Lamprey, Sea, River and Brook. More information is needed on where they spawn so these areas can better protected. Pale patches of disturbed gravel at the tail end of pools from late March to early May may be lamprey spawning sites.
Sea & River Lamprey: More information is needed on where these two migratory species go to in the Tweed. River Lamprey are from 30 to 40cms in length and Sea Lamprey from 70cms to 1 metre. Though long and thin like Eels, they are easily identifiable as they do not have gill covers but instead have series of holes behind their heads, nor do they have any fins just behind their heads as Eel do.
Fallen trees: These can completely block small streams as they catch debris being washed downstream. This creates leaky dams that stop adult fish getting upstream to spawn and that force the flow of water into the banks, washing them away and making the stream wider and shallower and so less suitable for young fish.
New Instream Structures and Channels: All river works should be approved by SEPA in consultation with the RTC, but the regulations are sometimes evaded. If you see new instream structures or newly dug channels that look as if they could be problems for fish, they should be reported so they can be checked. Older instream structures will have been recorded during habitat surveys made by The Tweed Foundation, so it is only newly made ones that could be unknown problems.
Unidentified fish: If you see or catch a fish that you think is an alien species to the Tweed, it should be photographed and reported immediately.
Blocked Fish Passes: It is the responsibility of the owner of a structure with a fish pass to keep it clear, so if you see one that that is blocked, please report it immediately for action to be taken This is particularly important in Autumn when the fish are running upstream to spawn.
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