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Inland Fisheries Ireland “Greatly Encouraged” by Public Support for Addressing Issues With Annacotty Weir

22nd December 2021
Annacotty Weir on the lower Mulkear River
Annacotty Weir on the lower Mulkear River outside Limerick Credit: IFI

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) says it is “greatly encouraged” by the growing public support for addressing problems around the movement of fish at Annacotty Weir.

More than 10,000 people have signed a petition to remove the weir on the River Mulkear outside Limerick that is blocking migratory fish, as The Times reported at the weekend.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, IFI has identified Annacotty Weir as a “significant barrier” to the free movement of several fish species including wild Atlantic salmon; sea, river and brook lamprey; wild brown trout; and eels.

The weir has been designated as “high priority” for fish passage improvement and IFI says it has begun works on “a very significant project to address the movement of fish at the weir”.

The State agency for Ireland’s inland and inshore fisheries adds: “We have applied for funding to the Salmon and Sea Trout Rehabilitation, Conservation and Protection Fund to support the next major phase of the project.

“If this application is successful, we will go to tender for services to help deliver the technical, engineering and planning elements of the Annacotty Weir project. Public engagement arrangements will also form part of tender requirements.

“We have completed an assessment of the weir structure to quantify its fish pass-ability and has also undertaken initial title research to identify the owners of land and structures potentially impacted by the project.”

IFI says it has engaged with key State agencies and semi-State bodies “to ensure all relevant government agencies are actively involved in the project from the outset”.

In the New Year, the next phase of the project “will involve extensive stakeholder and public engagement, to ensure that all stakeholder views are captured to form part of the planning process.

“The vision that Inland Fisheries Ireland shares with all stakeholders and the public is to make the River Mulkear easily accessible to fish species, just as nature had intended,” it says.

Published in Marine Wildlife, Angling
MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy is a contributor covering all things on the water, from boating and wildlife to science and business

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Marine Wildlife Around Ireland One of the greatest memories of any day spent boating around the Irish coast is an encounter with marine wildlife.  It's a thrill for young and old to witness seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales right there in their own habitat. As boaters fortunate enough to have experienced it will testify even spotting a distant dorsal fin can be the highlight of any day afloat.  Was that a porpoise? Was it a whale? No matter how brief the glimpse it's a privilege to share the seas with Irish marine wildlife.

Thanks to the location of our beautiful little island, perched in the North Atlantic Ocean there appears to be no shortage of marine life to observe.

From whales to dolphins, seals, sharks and other ocean animals this page documents the most interesting accounts of marine wildlife around our shores. We're keen to receive your observations, your photos, links and youtube clips.

Boaters have a unique perspective and all those who go afloat, from inshore kayaking to offshore yacht racing that what they encounter can be of real value to specialist organisations such as the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) who compile a list of sightings and strandings. The IWDG knowledge base has increased over the past 21 years thanks in part at least to the observations of sailors, anglers, kayakers and boaters.

Thanks to the IWDG work we now know we share the seas with dozens of species who also call Ireland home. Here's the current list: Atlantic white-sided dolphin, beluga whale, blue whale, bottlenose dolphin, common dolphin, Cuvier's beaked whale, false killer whale, fin whale, Gervais' beaked whale, harbour porpoise, humpback whale, killer whale, minke whale, northern bottlenose whale, northern right whale, pilot whale, pygmy sperm whale, Risso's dolphin, sei whale, Sowerby's beaked whale, sperm whale, striped dolphin, True's beaked whale and white-beaked dolphin.

But as impressive as the species list is the IWDG believe there are still gaps in our knowledge. Next time you are out on the ocean waves keep a sharp look out!

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