More salmon are set to access the Ness and Beauly river systems thanks to an agreement that is the first step in a major strategy to reverse the decline of the local salmon populations.
The Ness District Salmon Fishery Board, working in partnership with the Beauly District Fishery Board, has reached agreement with the operators of two key salmon netting stations in the Moray Firth to cease netting until at least May next year.
One-off compensation payments have been made to Sandy Patience, operator of the Kincurdie station off Rosemarkie, and Graham Sutherland, operator at Longman Point, close to the Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC stadium.
The two netting stations recorded a combined catch of 440 salmon and grilse last year. Allowing the free passage of an equivalent number of fish this season has the potential to result in more than a million extra salmon eggs being deposited in local river systems. Even at the naturally low survival rate of such eggs, the Board hopes this results in the return of up 1,000 new fish to our rivers over the coming years.