08/07/2010

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.

The Open Day, expected to be attended by over 500 members of the public, is designed to promote the research work undertaken at the Station into the dynamics of a wild salmon population.

Speaking during his visit the Minister McCausland said: "The Salmon Station carries out very valuable work on the status of salmon stock in the River Bush.

"Data gathered here informs Departmental policy on salmon and it also contributes to the assessment of salmon stocks at international level.
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"The Station also records accurate counts of upstream migrating adult salmon, as well as counts of juvenile salmon migrating downstream which provides information on stock levels," he said.

The Northern Ireland Environment Agency attended the open day this year for the first time and outlined their roles and responsibilities and how their role links into the work undertaken by DCAL fisheries staff.

NI Environment Minister Edwin Poots said: "My visit to the River Bush Salmon Open Day has given me the opportunity to see the very important work carried out on salmon stocks.

"The tour of the Station is not only interesting but also very informative about the life cycle of salmon and I would encourage people to attend the Open Day in future years to see this facility in the beautiful setting of the north coast.

"I think it's vitally important that both Departments continue to work together to protect our rivers and the salmon stocks they support."

(BMcC/GK)

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