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About Wester Ross Fisheries Trust

Recording fish details at Tournaig

Recording fish details at Tournaig

Wester Ross Fisheries Trust (WRFT) was established in 1996 in response to the need for solutions to fisheries problems and to improve the management of wild fisheries.

While the majority of the Trust's work to date has focused on migratory fish species such as salmon and sea trout, the Trust has also undertaken scientific research on a range of other freshwater fish species, notably brown trout, char and lamprey. There are a number of factors in the freshwater and marine environment that have impacted wild fish populations in the region. Wester Ross Fisheries Trust works closely with local fishery proprietors and landowners, anglers, government agencies and other non-government organisations to restore fisheries through improved management. The Trust currently employs one full-time biologist and several part-time assistants. Their primary role is to develop science-based solutions to fisheries problems through the collection, provision and exchange of detailed information.

This website presents an overview of some of the Trust's work to "conserve, restore and develop healthy and productive fisheries within Wester Ross" with links to information about current activities and recent reports.

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  • WRFT Newsletter October 2023
    This newsletter provides a summary of work during the period March to September 2023 including sea trout sampling, juvenile salmon surveys and production, workshops and some other activities. .  Posted: 07/10/2023 (2.24MB)
  • Fishy Tales by Sea, Gairloch 21 October 2023
    Poster advertising a family day on the beach and in Gairloch Community Hall in collaboration with Thunderbolts and Lightning theatre company, West of Scotland Herring Hunt, Dr Neil Burns underwater fish and fish habitats video project, and others. .  Posted: 21/09/2023 (206KB)
  • Peatland nutrition, hummock formation and carbon sequestration poster
    This poster is based on observation in peatland areas of Wester Ross and shows how mossy hummocks may be formed by birds and other animals which deposit droppings rich in phosphate which fertilise the vegetation. What are the optimum levels of ecosystem-derived organic phosphate to support biodiversity and carbon sequestration in peatland areas? Poster by Peter Cunningham, prepared for the WRFT Catchment Vegetation Revival Workshop at Beinn Eighe NNR and Kinlochewe, 25th and 26th April 2023 .  Posted: 02/05/2023 (546KB)
  • Catchment vegetation workshop introduction and field trip report
    Introduction to the WRFT Catchment Vegetation Revival meeting at Kinlochewe on 26th April 2023 and report from field trip to view hummocks and Donald McVean's fertilised plots by the Pony Path on Beinn Eighe NNR on 25th April 2023 by Dr Shraveena Venkatesh.  Posted: 02/05/2023 (6.28MB)
  • WRFT Review April 2023
    This review provides a summary of work carried out during the 2022 field season including juvenile fish surveys, adult salmon monitoring and sampling of sea trout around Wester Ross, and includes a report from the Wester Ross Area Salmon Fishery Board and other information. .  Posted: 24/04/2023 (5.23MB)
  • Angus's Boat song 16 April 2023 words and story
    The song Angus's boat tells the story of the fisheries around Gairloch, Wester Ross. Angus was a fisherman who lived at Big Sand, by Loch Gairloch and whose wooden row boat was pulled up on the shore by the Sound of Longa. WRFT Biologist, Peter Cunningham often met Angus on the shore when he lived nearby; Angus also told his stories to Sue Pomeroy as part of the herring fishers project. Gairloch Museum also has recorded conversations with Angus. .  Posted: 17/04/2023 (171KB)
  • Herring Fisheries & West of Scotland Herring Hunt
    Presentation by Dr Michelle Frost at the Wester Ross MPA Discovery Day in Ullapool on 14th October 2022. .  Posted: 08/11/2022 (4.47MB)
  • Maerl biodiversity and carbon poster
    Maerl, often referred to as coral by former herring fishermen, is the most important priority marine feature for which the Wester Ross Marine Protected Area was desgnated. Maerl seabed habitats provide homes for many animals including spawning herring, juvenile cod and scallops. Maerl beds around Wester Ross are some of the most important in Europe but remain inadequately surveyed. They are damaged by scallop dredging and organic nutrient rich waste discharges from open cage salmon farms.  Posted: 30/05/2022 (901KB)
  • WRFT Newsletter March 2022
    This newsletter provides a summary of some of the work of WRFT over 2021, including some plans for 2022.  Posted: 11/03/2022 (2.95MB)
  • Status of Juvenile Wild Salmon in Wester Ross Northwest Scotland 2022
    This report provides a summary of the results of the 2021 juvenile fish survey in the Wester Ross area, and discusses findings and associated issues relating to the conservation and management of important wild salmon populations in the northwest of Scotland .  Posted: 01/02/2022 (5.70MB)
  • Welcome back to new WRFT_7MB
    This presentation (smartphone resolution) prepared for the relaunch of the 'new' Trust in April 2021 reviews wild salmon and sea trout in Wester Ross, some pressures they face, past work and support, and future objectives for WRFT. .  Posted: 13/04/2021 (6.73MB)
  • Welcome back to new WRFT_18MB
    This presentation (for computer) prepared for the relaunch of the 'new' Trust in April 2021 reviews the wild salmon and sea trout of Wester Ross, pressures they face, some past work and support, and future objectives for WRFT.  Posted: 13/04/2021 (17.66MB)
  • Skye and Wester Ross Fisheries Trust Review September 2020
    This review presents a summary of the work of the Skye and Wester Ross Fisheries Trust during the 15 months up to the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020 and other related information including catch reports, results of fish surveys, an assessment of wild salmon populations and some of the pressures they face, and reports from project activities. .  Posted: 23/09/2020 (8.05MB)
  • End of year Annual Accounts 2019/20
    End of Year accounts 2019/20.  Posted: 15/08/2020 (3.98MB)
  • SWRFT Newsletter February 2019
    This newsletter provides a summary of SWRFT activities in 2018 including sea trout surveys, juvenile fish survey, other project work and other fisheries relate news. .  Posted: 11/02/2019 (3.61MB)
  • WRFT Biologist's Review of Recent Activities, October 2016
    Presentation prepared for the Skye & Wester Ross Fisheries Trust Open Day at the Loch Torridon Centre, 24th October 2016.  Posted: 31/10/2016 (24.36MB)
  • WRFT Review May 2016
    This review covers the period February 2015 to April 2016, and presents summaries describing the status of wild fish populations, the results of sea trout and sea lice monitoring work including sea trout around the Loch Torridon area, a summary of the activities of the Skye Fisheries Trust, work to monitor and control invasive species, a section on education and student project and much else.  Posted: 19/05/2016 (6.18MB)
  • Refertilising Wester Ross
    Programme for the workshop on 8th April 2016 and presentation by Peter Cunningham considering long term changes in the availability of the limiting nutrient phosphorus across much of Wester Ross and the need for ecosystem refertilisation.  Posted: 12/04/2016 (8.76MB)
  • WRFT Review January 2015
    This review covers an 18 month period from July 2013 to December 2014 (with Jan 2015 update from Wester Ross Area Salmon Fishery Board) and presents a summary of the results of fish juvenile fish surveys, sea trout and sea louse monitoring, fish farming related issues, surveys on the Isle of Skye, a Little Gruinard macro-invertebrate study, mink monitoring and other activities carried out by the Trust.  Posted: 21/01/2015 (7.09MB)
  • Wester Ross Marine Wildlife Poster
    This poster shows some of the marine wildlife habitats and marine wildlife to be found around Wester Ross including habitats of nature conservation importance within the possible Wester Ross Marine Protected Area. Copies are available from WRFT.  Posted: 18/07/2014 (1.22MB)
  • WRFT Review July 2013
    This report summarises much of the work of WRFT over the period July 2012 to June 2013, including summaries of the results of juvenile fish surveys, sea lice monitoring and other work to adress problems and opportunities for the wild fisheries of the Wester Ross area.  Posted: 05/08/2013 (5.54MB)
  • WRFT Review July 2012
    This is the latest 'annual review' which covers work carried out during the 2011 field seson, and includes sections on juvenile fish surveys, salmon catches, sea trout sampling (and sea lice), arctic charr, interviews with herring fishermen, and WRFT schools based project.  Posted: 04/07/2012 (1.83MB)
  • WRFT Review May 2010
    This annual review present a summary of the work of the Trust over the year 2009 to 2010 including surveys of juvenile fish, sea trout in the sea, invasve non-native species, catch records, and a range of fisheries management and education projects.  Posted: 17/05/2010 (5.52MB)
  • WRFT Review May 2009
    Wester Ross Fisheries Trust Annual Review, May 2009.  Posted: 19/05/2009 (4.82MB)