Supplementary Monitoring of West Coast Special Areas of Conservation (SACs)
Because the GRTS design for the National Electrofishing Programme allocates greater numbers of samples to longer rivers, with higher predicted salmon densities, some west coast SAC rivers contained few or no samples under the national design. Given their conservation importance and reporting requirements there was a need to include some monitoring in these rivers. Consequently, in 2018, an additional 28 sites were allocated to west coast Salmon and Freshwater Pearl Mussel SACs. These samples were split across four strata, with 7 samples per strata. The strata were: Langavat, North Harris, Little Gruinard and a group of smaller pearl mussel SACs (Ardnamurchan Burn, Allt a’ Mhuilinn, River Kerry, Mingarry Burn and River Moidart, Abhainn Clais an Eas and Allt Sanna). The resulting sample design is shown below. The location of sampling sites can be downloaded in “csv” and “shapefile” formats. Unfortunately it was not possible for local fisheries managers to complete electrofishing on the Little Gruinard where only a single site was sampled by MSS. Consequently the final dataset only includes 21 samples. Results from the 2018 survey can be explored through the NEPS R Shiny Application.
Map of West Coast SAC sites. Red shows the distribution of SAC Rivers, for river orders 2 – 4, black points show the 28 electrofishing sites.