Case study:Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Ehen

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Location: 54° 31' 51", -3° 26' 37"
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Project overview

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Status In progress
Project web site http://https://www.pearlsinperil.org.uk/
Themes Fisheries, Habitat and biodiversity, Hydromorphology, Water quality
Country England
Main contact forename Jackie
Main contact surname Webley
Main contact user ID User:Pearlsinperil
Contact organisation Scottish Natural Heritage
Contact organisation web site http://http://www.snh.gov.uk/protecting-scotlands-nature/protected-species/life-projects/pearls-in-peril/
Partner organisations West Cumbria Rivers Trust, Environment Agency, Lake District National Park, United Utilities
Parent multi-site project

Case_study:Pearls in Peril LIFE project

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encompassing the following
projects
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Pearls in Peril logo

Project summary

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The River Ehen, supports the largest viable population of pearl mussels left in England, estimated at between 350,000 and 500,000 individuals. The Ehen is the most important river in England for freshwater pearl mussels, both biogeographically and for its size and population structure. 13km of the main River Ehen, from the outlet of Ennerdale Water, to the confluence of the River Keekle in Cleator Moor are designated as protected sites for both pearl mussels and Atlantic Salmon.

Pearls in Peril has delivered actions that work to reduce diffuse pollution, siltation and erosion and aim to improve water quality to safeguard the future of the River Ehen freshwater pearl mussel population.

The project has produced a river wide Conservation Management Plan that, for the first time, brought together stakeholders across the catchment to identify key issues and priorities. Directed by the Management Plan and supported by project partners the project has completed over 240m of willow spiling, fenced livestock from 5km of riverbank, provided alternative livestock waterings and planted over 7000 trees. Five sites, covering 350m of riverbank, have been restored using green engineering techniques including bank re-profiling, tree planting, willow spiling, and fencing. In river obstructions causing erosion and scour have been removed and brash bundles have been used to encourage natural river bank restoration. Gateways and heavily poached stock crossings have been gravelled and the project has removed 60 tonnes of rubble from riverbank.




Volunteers have undertaken incredible amounts of work including hedge laying, making brash bundles, installing leaky dams, creating new wetland areas and tree planting.

Monitoring surveys and results

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Monitoring work has been undertaken including sonde data collection, freshwater pearl mussel survey and electro-fishing. On the River Ehen Atlantic salmon are the preferred host fish for as part of the freshwater pearl mussel lifecycle.

Lessons learnt

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Pearls in Peril is supported on the River Ehen by a Technical Steering Group. This Group brings together key stakeholders in the catchment and shares information on other activities and projects being undertaken. Through this group many opportunities have been realised and additional benefits gained. This approach is worth considering for future projects on rivers where there are many interested stakeholders.


Image gallery


River Ehen catchment view.png
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Catchment and subcatchment



Site

Name
WFD water body codes
WFD (national) typology
WFD water body name
Pre-project morphology
Reference morphology
Desired post project morphology
Heavily modified water body
National/international site designation
Local/regional site designations
Protected species present
Invasive species present
Species of interest
Dominant hydrology
Dominant substrate
River corridor land use
Average bankfull channel width category
Average bankfull channel width (m)
Average bankfull channel depth category
Average bankfull channel depth (m)
Mean discharge category
Mean annual discharge (m3/s)
Average channel gradient category
Average channel gradient
Average unit stream power (W/m2)


Project background

Reach length directly affected (m)
Project started
Works started
Works completed
Project completed
Total cost category
Total cost (k€)
Benefit to cost ratio
Funding sources

Cost for project phases

Phase cost category cost exact (k€) Lead organisation Contact forename Contact surname
Investigation and design
Stakeholder engagement and communication
Works and works supervision
Post-project management and maintenance
Monitoring



Reasons for river restoration

Mitigation of a pressure
Hydromorphology
Biology
Physico-chemical
Other reasons for the project


Measures

Structural measures
Bank/bed modifications
Floodplain / River corridor
Planform / Channel pattern
Other
Non-structural measures
Management interventions
Social measures (incl. engagement)
Other


Monitoring

Hydromorphological quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Biological quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Physico-chemical quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative

Any other monitoring, e.g. social, economic

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative


Monitoring documents



Additional documents and videos


Additional links and references

Link Description

Supplementary Information

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