Minister vows to restore salmon runs

Culture, Arts and Leisure Minister, Michael McGimpsey, today emphasised his determination to restore salmon runs in the River Bush.

The Minister visited the River Bush Salmon Station where he viewed work being carried out to tackle the decline in the numbers of stock – a problem not confined to Northern Ireland.

Mr McGimpsey said: “Concerns have been expressed that the operation of facilities at the station is harmful to salmon and is the cause of declining runs of fish to the river.

“There is no evidence to support this. Indeed, it is because of the counting facilities here that we have been able to identify the real causes of the problem.

“It has been established that the degradation of the river has led to reduced survival rates of juvenile salmon in freshwater and a significant decline in marine survival has resulted in fewer fish returning to the River Bush to spawn.”

The Minister pointed out that his department had introduced a range of measures and programmes to address this decline such as the buy-out of coastal nets and by restricting commercial and angling exploitation.

He said that these particular measures were being implemented throughout the area administered by the Fisheries Conservancy Board and that they would have a positive effect on the River Bush.

Other steps taken included the employment of a river warden to detect and report pollution, the refurbishment of the habitat and a restocking programme.

Afterwards, Mr McGimpsey travelled to Stranocum to watch the restocking programme in action.

He added: “This year alone, the hatchery at Bushmills has provided more than half a million juvenile salmon specifically for restocking the Bush.

“This is evidence of our determination to do all we can to restore salmon runs to the river and I am confident that the work being done will go a long way towards achieving that objective.”


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

08 July 2010
Ministers 'In The Swim' At Salmon Facility
Things were going swimmingly today in an 'away day' with a difference as Stormont Ministers visited the salmon research station in Bushmills. NI Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) Minister Nelson McCausland and Environment Minister Edwin Poots were attending the annual River Bush Salmon Station Open Day.
05 February 2016
Other News In Brief
Woman Convicted Of Benefit Fraud A woman has been convicted for claiming for claiming benefits she was not entitled at Coleraine Magistrates' Court. Margaret Beattie claimed Jobseekers Allowance and Housing Benefit totalling £12,280 while failing to declare employment. She was given 75 hours community service.
06 January 2016
Minister Meets With Farmers To Discuss Major Flooding Issues
Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Michelle O'Neill has met with farmers and communities in Co Fermanagh to discuss the major effects of flooding in the area.
07 December 2015
Finance Minister's Enniskillen Office Receives Bomb Threat
Finance Minister Arlene Foster has slammed the people responsible after receiving a threat which sparked a security alert at her constituency office in Co Fermanagh. The threat contained a "recognised code word" and resulted in the evacuation of the East Bridge Street office and surrounding properties in the area.
27 November 2015
Health Minister Slammed Over Waiting Lists
An Ulster Unionist MLA has slammed Health Minister Simon Hamilton after it was revealed the number of people on medical waiting lists has reached almost 400,000. Mr Michael McGimpsey said people suffering with serious illness are being badly let down.
12 December 2012
Salmon Conservation Outlined Ahead Of Fishing Season
Sports Minister Carál Ní Chuilín has outlined Northern Ireland’s plans for the conservation of salmon stocks. Ahead of the forthcoming salmon season, the minister has made a statement to the Assembly on measures she will be introducing.
09 February 2016
Call For Justice Minister To Reconsider Courthouse Closures
The SDLP is calling on the Justice Minister to reconsider his decision to close five courthouses in Northern Ireland. Minister David Ford said courthouses in Armagh, Ballymena, Lisburn, Magherafelt and Strabane are to close. SDLP West Tyrone MLA Daniel McCrossan hit out at his decision.
02 February 2016
Psychoactive Substances Act Welcomed
The Justice and Health Ministers have welcomed the Psychoactive Substances Act, which is expected to be implemented in spring this year. The Act will prohibit the production, supply and importation of potentially dangerous drugs, often incorrectly called 'legal highs', and will see offenders face up to seven years in prison.
02 February 2016
NASUWT Rejects Pay Offer
NI's largest teachers' union has rejected a pay offer for teachers and principals. The offer to the NASUWT was made by the management side of the Teachers Negotiating Committee (TNC). The offer continues the year-on-year cuts to teachers' pay. The NASUWT is calling for an across the board above inflation cost of living award.
29 August 2008
Sammy Goes 'Wild' Over Salmon
There were moves today to protect a Northern Ireland river which hosts wild Atlantic Salmon stocks.
10 August 2004
Salmon deaths a disaster, say anglers
More than 600 salmon have been poisoned in the River Strule near Omagh according to anglers. An investigation into the allegations led to 200 adult salmon being removed from the river last Friday, however since then a further 400 dead fish have been removed from part of the river near Cappagh Church.
20 September 2010
River Lagan To Be Dredged
Work to ensure Belfast's main river does not become "smelly" again is to begin shortly. The Stormont Social Development Minister Alex Attwood has announced that the River Lagan will be extensively dredged - cleaning up both the iconic river and creating jobs at the same time. The £2.
04 February 2016
Other News In Brief
Brookvent Launches New Heat Recovery Ventilation Product Brookvent, based in Dunmurry, has launched a new heat recovery ventilation product. The firm received research and development support from Invest Northern Ireland. Commenting on the launch of the aircycle 3.
05 May 2004
Minister launches new fisheries protection vessel
Culture, Arts and Leisure Minister, Angela Smith today emphasised the importance of enforcing fisheries legislation to counter illegal exploitation of salmon stocks. The Minister was speaking in Ballycastle, where she was launching the new £150,000 Fisheries Conservation Board’s patrol vessel, the ‘Dun na Salar’.
01 February 2011
Habitat Boost Puts Anglers In The Swim
Improvements in local river habitats are set to help rebuild salmon stocks - while an 'invasion' of giant hogweed is to be repelled through a £2.6m project to root the species out of riverbanks in both Ireland and Scotland.