Case study:Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project

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Contents

Location: 54° 31' 28" N, 3° 24' 37" W
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Project overview

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Status In progress
Project web site

http://www.pearlsinperil.org.uk/

Themes Environmental flows and water resources, Fisheries, Habitat and biodiversity, Hydromorphology, Monitoring, Water quality
Country England, Scotland, Wales
Main contact forename Jackie
Main contact surname Webley
Main contact user ID
Contact organisation Scottish Natural Heritage
Contact organisation web site http://www.snh.gov.uk/
Partner organisations
This is a parent project
encompassing the following
projects
Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - Afon Eden, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - Mingary Burn, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Borgie, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Dee, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Ehen, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Evelix, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Naver, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Oykel, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River South Esk, Pearls in Peril LIFE+ GB Project - River Spey
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Project summary

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'Pearls in Peril' is a LIFE + NATURE project co-funded by 22 organisations across Scotland, England and Wales. This exciting nationwide project will act to safeguard important populations of freshwater pearl mussel (Margaritifera margaritifera).

The project spans four years from 2012 to 2016. In that time, a wide range of conservation measures will be implemented in key river systems. The measures will aim to: - RESTORE the habitat of freshwater pearl mussel and salmonids (salmon and trout); - SECURE the long term survival of existing freshwater pearl mussel populations; and - COMMUNICATE with local, national and international audiences to raise awareness of freshwater pearl mussel conservation issues.

Best practice methods will be used to secure freshwater pearl mussel populations and some of these actions include: - Restore and improve riparian habitat by planting native trees and fencing riverbanks; - Pearls In The Classroom - an education programme to raise awareness of the freshwater pearl mussel amongst children; - Reduce diffuse pollution by ditch blocking, creating buffer strips and wetlands; - Employ a riverwatch scheme to reduce the risk from wildlife crime; - Encyst juvenile salmon with local pearl mussel larvae; - Monitor water quality, habitat restoration, pearl mussel populations and host salmonids; and - Raise awareness of freshwater pearl mussels and the project.

A total of 21 rivers across Britain will be involved, all of which are NATURA 2000 sites and are designated as Special Areas of Conservation (SACs). In Scotland, these are the Rivers Dee, South Esk, Spey, Evelix, Naver, Borgie, Oykel, Fionaven, Abhainn Clais an Eas, Allt a'Mhuilinn, Ardvar & Loch a'Mhuilinn Woodlands, Inverpolly, Moidart, Kerry, Glen Beasdale, Ardnamurchan Burns, Rannoch Moor, North Harris, Moriston and Mingarry Burn on Mull. In England, the project will involve the River Ehen in Cumbria and in Wales, the Afon Eden in Snowdonia.

Monitoring surveys and results

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Monitor water quality, habitat restoration, pearl mussel populations and host salmonids

Lessons learnt

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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 2012/01/01
Works started
Works completed
Project completed 2016/12/31
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 Barriers to fish migration, to safeguard the future of the most important pearl mussel populations in Great Britain
Hydromorphology Continuity for organisms, Quantity & dynamics of flow, Width & depth variation
Biology Fish, inverterbrates
Physico-chemical redox potential
Other reasons for the project socioeconomic benefits for salmonid fisheries, farmers and tourism


Measures

Structural measures
Bank/bed modifications
Floodplain / River corridor Fencing, Tree planting, Reduce diffuse pollution by ditch blocking, Creation of wetlands
Planform / Channel pattern
Other
Non-structural measures
Management interventions
Social measures (incl. engagement) Pearls In The Classroom - an education programme to raise awareness of the freshwater pearl mussel, Employ a riverwatch scheme to reduce the risk from wildlife crime
Other Encyst juvenile salmon with local pearl mussel larvae


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
Fish Yes Yes Yes Yes No


Invertebrates Yes Yes Yes Yes No


Physico-chemical quality elements

Element When monitored Type of monitoring Control site used Result
Before measures After measures Qualitative Quantitative
Oxygen balance No No No No No

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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