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Fish SOS at power station

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By Fiona Reid
Dumfries and West
Fish SOS at power station

AN unusual fish rescue operation has been carried out at a power station in the region.

About 40 fish were helped to safety after becoming trapped as the reservoir at Carsfad, near Castle Douglas, was partially dewatered for routine maintenance work.
Various ‘fish ladders’ are already installed around Galloway’s network of dams and hydro-electric power to help conserve wildlife and habitats. They consist of a series of ascending pools, each connected by a submerged gate into the reservoir through which the fish can swim.
Water flow is altered during the maintenance works to allow river life to pass safely – however on this occasion 40 fish were found to be isolated in the fish pass as the dam level dropped.
In total, 20 brown trout, 17 rainbows, two sticklebacks and a perch were helped back into open water.
It happened while Scottish Power was working on the Galloway Hydro Scheme and a spokesman said: “When we drain down a reservoir for maintenance work, the water that normally flows through the fish pass is released through the bottom of the dam instead.
“As we begin draining, our main priority is to retrieve and recover any fish caught before the work actually takes place. We work closely with Galloway Fisheries Trust and ensured they were on hand to catch the fish and move them to a safer area.”
He added: “It was great to see them all swimming on their way.”

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