Fisheries

We have had a fisheries research department since the mid-1980s, and currently the department has five full-time staff based at our Salmon and Trout Research Centre at East Stoke, near Wareham in Dorset.

Dylan Roberts Rasmus Lauridsen William Beaumont
Dylan Roberts
Head of Fisheries
 
Dr Rasmus Lauridsen
Fisheries Scientist
 
William Beaumont
Senior Fisheries Scientist
 
Luke Scott Stephen Gregory Jessica Picken
Luke Scott
Fisheries Scientist
 
Dr Stephen Gregory
Fisheries Scientist
 
Jessica Picken
PhD Student
 
Jess Marsh Elinor Parry  
Jessica Marsh
PhD Student
Elinor Parry
Placement Student
 


As the name of our centre suggests, our work focuses on researching salmon and brown trout. Unlike most freshwater fish, salmon and trout are ‘game’ fish, which historically have been fished for and eaten, hence they fit into the same category of wildlife as other game species we study at the Trust.

Given that they are fished for and often killed for food, there is a requirement to manage populations to prevent over-exploitation and to ensure their environment is suitable to maintain healthy populations. To manage them appropriately, we need to undertake studies on many issues, particularly those that threaten to damage their habitats. Like most wildlife, fish have suffered from intensive agricultural practices, causing damage to habitats and polluting nursery streams.

Research is intended to improve our capability and understanding. It generally involves laboratory of field investigations, and data analysis designed to answer specific questions and test hypotheses. Our research is formulated into time-limited projects that are required to meet an agreed schedule of milestones and targets.

Our research goals are:

  • Understanding the functioning of aquatic ecosystems
  • Understanding and quantifying human impacts on aquatic ecosystems, particularly on living resources and the aquatic environment
  • Evaluating options for sustainable fishing and aquaculture

Studies are carried out by the Fisheries department at various locations throughout the UK, sometimes working in conjunction with other independent agencies.

Current projects

  • Developing wild trout fishery management methods, including completion of reports of all historic fishery activity (1997-ongoing)
  • Large-scale conservation project and scientific monitoring of 30km of river habitat on the River Monnow in Herefordshire (2003-ongoing)
  • Understanding population declines in salmon (2009-ongoing)
  • Calculating the effects of rotary screw traps on salmon smolts (2009-ongoing)
  • The effects of a hydropower installation on salmon smolts (2012-2015)
  • Monitoring sea trout smolts through the Frome estuary and Poole Harbour and their return to the river (2014-2015)
  • Long-term study of the ecology of River Wylye grayling (2009-ongoing)
  • Impacts of beaver dams on salmonids (2014-2017)

Examples of previous projects

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