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The West Coast Tracking Project - Update

We caught some very large smolts earlier this year as part of the West Coast Tracking Project. Some of the smolts measured up to 20cm which is the largest captured from any of the smolt traps across Scotland. The scales from these large smolts have proven difficult to read and an example is shown.


This particular fish was caught in the Grimersta trap on 19/05 and weighed 47g and measured 17.3cm. There are 3 clear winters highlighted in blue but there is a fourth “check” highlighted in red which can be attributed to the following:

  1. A change in the fishes environment which resulted in significantly better feeding opportunity for instance dropping out of a small burn and into a loch.

  2. A mild winter check, a visible sign of climate change and a mild winter only marginally slowing down the fish's growth.

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