Aquatic Ecology and Fisheries Surveys
Our Aquatic Ecologists are currently undertaking a number of Aquatic Ecology and Fisheries Surveys. These surveys are being completed to inform both the Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) and Natura Impact Statements (NIS) of a number of large scale proposed developments, including major wind energy developments and also infrastructure projects such as road schemes. We currently have teams working across Ireland and also in Northern Ireland.
At this time we are working on some of the largest wind energy projects currently being progressed in Ireland. Also, although there are very few national road schemes currently being progressed at present in this country, it is notable that ECOFACT are involved in almost all currently active schemes. Schemes we are currently involved with include the N14 Letterkenny to Lifford Road Scheme, the N11 Arklow Rathnew Road scheme, and the N4 Collooney to Castlebaldwin scheme where we were working this week .
Overall, this is proving to be a very busy fieldwork season, and have been taking advantage of recent very good weather. This week we were undertaking an aquatic ecology and fisheries survey of the River Unshin and tributaries in Co Sligo. Surveys we have completed here to date include River Habitats Surveys (RHS), fisheries survey, white-clawed crayfish surveys, lamprey surveys and floating river vegetation and riparian habitat assessments. This work is being completed to inform both the EIS and NIS of the proposed N4 Collooney to Castlebaldwin Road Scheme which is one of the few national road schemes currently being progressed in Ireland.
The Unshin River is a candidate SAC selected for alluvial wet woodlands, floating river vegetation, Atlantic Salmon and Otter. The River Unshin corridor is an almost pristine unmanaged and undrained river with a fully intact floodplain and excellent water quality. In a county where most of our limestone rivers have been severely degraded by drainage schemes and/or pollution, this river is truly unique and exceptional in terms of its physical and biological diversity. The River Unshin SAC is not directly affected by this very well designed road scheme. The gallery above shows some of the fieldwork we completed this week at the Lisconny cascades on the Unshin River. We consider this to be one of the most beautiful sections of river left in Ireland.
If you would like additional information on our capabilities please do not hesitate to contact us. ECOFACT are Ireland’s leading independent ecological consultancy, and aquatic ecology and fisheries assessments are a core part of our work.