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West Wales

Adopt a tributary and help the River Towy thrive

AS LOCKDOWNS are easing, are you enjoying being able to get out and about again and meet up with people? Why not get your friends together to help protect a section of your local river?

People in west Wales are being invited to “adopt” local streams to boost fish stocks and help make improvements for rivers and their wildlife.

The Adopt a Tributary initiative will improve the condition of the tributaries of the river Tywi/Towy and foster a sense of local ownership.

The project is funded by Natural Resources Wales (NRW), Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water and Carmarthenshire County Council (Targeted Finance Fund).

Many tributaries are important as fish spawning and nursery areas, but a variety of factors including acidification, pollution, barriers to fish migration, littering and general habitat degradation means they are often not as healthy as they could be. Their restoration is essential to improve fisheries, water quality and biodiversity.

The project is already working with local communities to tackle many of the problems that are affecting these streams, and West Wales Rivers Trust (WWRT) is looking to increase the number of groups actively involved to ensure as much of the Tywi/Towy as possible is cared for.

Harriet Alvis, Project Manager for West Wales Rivers Trust said: “The Tywi and its tributaries are a key part of our landscape in Carmarthenshire and essential to the wide variety of species that live in or around it. However, we have seen worrying declines in some of our

most iconic fish species, such as the Atlantic salmon, sea trout and European eel.

This project aims to address many of the factors affecting tributaries in Carmarthenshire and develop appreciation of their value within local communities, by encouraging hands on engagement.

Fish populations are under real pressure and anything we can do to improve their habitat will be of real benefit.”

Anyone who is interested in adopting a tributary should email Harriet on [email protected]