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Tweed BioBlog: week beginning Monday 1st August 2016

Monday: mainly admin, but started serious work on revising and updating the Stocks Assessment section of the Tweed & Eye Fisheries Management plan. Tuesday: Meeting with a civil engineer at the Gala cauld to discuss feasibility of adding a smolt trap alongside the fish ladder. The counter in the ladder counts the adults coming back, but with a smolt trap we can count them going out as well, to make the Gala a proper “Index Tributary” for the Summer Salmon of the Tweed. Tagging the smolts (using PIT tags, the sort pets are “chipped” with) will also give added information e.g. on whether small smolts have the same rate of return as large. As no fish can get back up the Gala except through the fish pass, and PIT tag detectors can be put into the pass (as has been done elsewhere) all returning tagged fish will be automatically detected. Wednesday & Thursday: back to updating the management plan. Friday: Joint staff meeting with the RTC then out netting in the late afternoon. Two nice (but lice-less) small Grilse and, finally, a fish with the numbers of Sea-lice that is normal for so far down in the river, a good Salmon of 780mm with 8 lice, some of them “Tide-lice”, with the egg sacs still attached, the first I’ve seen for months. Perhaps a sign that the fish starting to move more quickly in to the river.