I’ve been out several times assisting with carrying out electrofishing surveys with Iain from our science team. For the unfamiliar, the technique uses an electrical current to briefly stun fish, harmlessly, allowing us to gather them in a net and remove them from the water to be analysed before being returned to the water. We worked in rivers and burns in the Carron, Devon, and Esk systems, and recorded a nice variety of species.
We found salmon, brown trout, lamprey, stone loach, some wee minnows, and a few European eels (including the largest yellow eel I’ve personally ever seen). We also found many bullheads, a non-native bottom-living fish from south of the border.
It’s a lovely community-run space, and the woodland trails around it are perfect for wee ones to explore. Chatting to some of the team on the day, it seems like they have plenty of plans for the future of the garden. Their website can be found here if you want to learn more about the project.
We’ve also spent some time this month completing and distributing the last of the nature activity kits we have been supplying to various communities around West Lothian. They were part of our community support work that we have been doing through the last few difficult months, and were intended to give families some fun nature based activities and games they could carry out while spending much more time at home and in the garden than usual. We’ve had some lovely feedback about them, and the last batch went away in the van this week to be distributed. It’s been a fun project for us, and something a bit different. But then again, hasn’t everything been a bit different recently?
It’s been really nice being able to get out and about a bit this month and do some work out in the catchment. Even on the rainy days.