Stoke & Staffordshire

Salmon seen jumping Churnet weirs

Salmon released into a Staffordshire river have been seen attempting to jump up the weirs as they return to breed.

Up to 40,000 young salmon have been released into the River Churnet each year since 2004, as part of a scheme to bring them back to the river.

Recent surveys have indicated good survival rates and river levels have recently risen enough for the fish to try the jumps.

The Churnet was traditionally a salmon river but populations declined

The Environment Agency's fisheries officer Mick Buxton said populations declined due to the industrial revolution and water pollution.

The young salmon traditionally stay in the river for two winters and then journey down into the River Trent and eventually into the North Atlantic.

After two or three years they then return to the river where they started their lives.

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