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#INLAND WATERWAYS - Staff at Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) staff are continuing their investigation of fish mortalities on a 9km stretch of the River Vartry in Wicklow

Both adult and juvenile salmon were found dead over the stretch of the Vartry from Roundwood downstream of the reservoir to Ashford, following a complaint received by the IFI last Thursday 28 June.

During the investigation IFI staff also noted the presence of live fish along the affected stretch.

Precise numbers of dead fish have not yet been confirmed due to the high water levels and recent heavy rains.

The news comes after growing concerns at the "worrying fall" in wild salmon numbers in Ireland's lakes and rivers, which has already prompted voluntary conservation measures on the Foyle system.

Published in Inland Waterways

#inland – Boat owners need to be careful about not overstaying at any one mooring after Waterways Ireland successfully undertook the prosecution of two boats owners on Lough Erne for breaching the 48 hour mooring Bye-law. The defendants received a caution and undertook to comply with the Bye-laws in the future.

Waterways Ireland communicates regularly with boat owners about the Bye-laws and has produced a publication "Good Boating Guide" advising boat owners of the Bye-laws on Lough Erne.

Having recorded breaches of the 48 hour mooring Bye-laws, Waterways Ireland wrote to the boat owners advising of the breach and after subsequent breaches were noted, Waterways Ireland reluctantly brought the prosecutions under the Bye-laws.

The Magistrate, Mr. Kennedy, commented that "the Prosecutions were properly brought and it is important that people comply with the Bye-laws. "

Brian D'Arcy, Waterways Ireland's Director of Operations stated "Waterways Ireland had no option but to prosecute following the increasing numbers of local boat owners abusing moorings provided for visiting tourist boats. Waterways Ireland provides moorings free of charge to enable tourists and touring boat owners to access attractions, services, towns and villages. Particularly in Enniskillen, the moorings facilitate the tourism economy as boaters spend in shops and restaurants; reduced access means less income for the town. Waterways Ireland would like to ensure all boat owners are made aware of their responsibilities when using public moorings and do not leave their boats moored in one location on a public mooring for more than 48 hours."

For more information boaters can download a copy of the Good Boaters Guide from the Waterways Ireland website or order a copy free from the Webshop www.waterwaysireland.org.

Published in Inland Waterways

#inland – The Lakelands & Inland Waterways International Sail Raid 2012 will take place from 14th to 21st September 2012 from Lough Erne to Killaloe. A fun, competitive sailing event for teams of 2-3 people, a different stage takes place each day taking the participants and their friends & family from Lough Erne to Killaloe. Using Shannon One Designs, Waterwags and Open Classes of boats, the international teams of are expected to come to Ireland following other successful Raids in the China Sea, Tahiti, Spain, Portugal, Scotland and Sweden. Teams from Ireland and Northern Ireland are also welcome to participate in this superb adventure.

Organised by Albacore/Dacmar events "Lakelands & Inland Waterways International Sail Raid 2012" will be run in close cooperation with the Lough Erne, Lough Ree and Lough Derg Yacht Clubs and with the assistance of the Dublin National Yacht Club.

Raid General Manager Jymmy Viant stated "the Lakelands & Inland Waterways International Sailing Raid 2012 is a long distance race with one or two legs every day and a different stopover every night. The "Lakelands & Inland Waterways International Sail Raid" will, to our knowledge, be the first raid run with traditional Irish Sailing Boats, among the oldest classes in the world. We expect international teams to relish this amazing opportunity to explore Ireland's inland waterways in such unique boats".

Eanna Rowe Waterways Ireland, Head of Marketing & Communications and Co-Chair of Lakelands & Inland Waterways stated "The Lakelands & Inland Waterways International Sail Raid is a superb opportunity to bring the awareness of a international audience to Ireland's inland waterways. There is a real opportunity for regular raids enthusiasts from all over the world and for sailors from all over Ireland to join in this unique experience."

Lakelands & Inland Waterways is a product development & marketing initiative of Waterways Ireland, Fáilte Ireland, Shannon Development, Fermanagh Lakeland Tourism and Tourism Ireland.

To find out more about the event or to join in email [email protected] or telephone +33 297 57 94 00.

Published in Inland Waterways
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#JUNE JAZZ JETTY – The Waterways Visitor Centre in the heart of the Grand Canal Dock, Dublin is the place to be with the venue buzzing to the sounds of the 'Jazz on the Jetty in June'. The free event this Wednesday (27th) is between 12.30 - 2.00pm.

Gavin Kerins will be entertaining those on the jetty in the inner basin which is close to the DART station at Grand Canal Dock. Also on the quayside there will be an Irish Village Market with a wide variety of food stalls, giving an option to buy your lunch during the musical event.

For further information and about the visitor centre click HERE.

Published in Boating Fixtures

#MAKING MAGICAL MOSAICS - This forthcoming weekend (23-24 June) there is to be an arts and craft morning workshop for children held in the Waterways Visitor Centre located in Dublin's Grand Canal Dock.

The theme for this weekend's activities is 'Magical Mosaics' where all things shiny, sparkly, colourful and glittery make these arts of work turn into magical mosaics!

The event is part of an on-going Children's Summer Workshop Programme, which is held every weekend until late August. On each of the weekends (both mornings) the theme of the art & craft workshop will change.

Art & craft workshops are to cater for two age groups with the first workshop starting at 11:00 (5 – 7 year olds) and the second session begins at 12 noon (8 – 10 year olds).

Admission is €3.00 per child, all children must be accompanied by an adult. Places are limited so booking is advisable. For further details contact: (01) 6777510, Wed – Sun 10.00am – 6.00pm and by visiting www.waterwaysirelandvisitorcentre.org/events.aspx

Published in Inland Waterways

#INLAND WATERWAYS - Inland Fisheries Ireland has reiterated its call for assistance in stopping the spread of the invasive Asian clam.

It comes just weeks after the fisheries body was alerted to a reported sighting of the highly invasive species in the Grand Canal at Pollagh in Co Offaly.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, IFI describes the Asian clam (Corbicula fluminea) as "a most unwelcome addition" to the fauna of Ireland's inland waterways

The bivalve mollusc is regarded as "one of the most notorious aquatic invasive species in the world", and poses a "major threat to Ireland's habitats, native species and internationally renowned fisheries."

The clam is already firmly established in the River Nore downstream of Inistioge and in the lower Barrow, where it has achieve a "staggering" density of almost 10,000 per square metre, and populations have also been recorded in the River Shannon and in Lough Derg.

IFI warns: "Considering that each clam can produce up to 70,000 juveniles each year, the potential for the enormous expansion of this population is apparent."  

In order to limit the further spread of the Asian clam, IFI is urging all water users, particularly anglers and boaters, to implement strict biosecurity measures, including disinfecting all equipment that has been exposed to or used in waterways when moving from one area to another.

Further information on these measures can be found on the website for CAISIE, the Control of Aquatic Invasive Species in Ireland programme, and on the IFI website. Any new sightings of the Asian clam should be reported to IFI immediately. 

Published in Inland Waterways

#BUILDING BARGES IN THE BOX – This forthcoming 'Bloomsday' there will be an arts & crafts workshop for children at the Waterways Visitor Centre, otherwise affectionately known as the 'Box' which is located in Dublin's Grand Canal Dock.

The theme for the Bloomsday weekend is 'Building Barges', what will your barge carry? which is part of a Children's Summer Workshop Programme, held at weekends till late August. On each of the weekends (both mornings) the theme of the art & craft workshop will change.

Art & craft workshops are to cater for two age groups with the first workshop starting at 11:00 (5 – 7 year olds) and the second session begins at 12 noon (8 – 10 year olds).

Admission is €3.00 per child, all children must be accompanied by an adult. Places are limited so booking is advisable. For further details contact: (01) 6777510, Wed – Sun 10.00am – 6.00pm and www.waterwaysirelandvisitorcentre.org/events.aspx

Published in Inland Waterways

#INLAND WATERWAYS - Fingal County Council invites any interested parties to make submissions on the future of the Royal Canal as a Greenway Route in the Fingal area.

The council, in conjunction with the National Transport Authority and Waterways Ireland, has identified the potential to upgrade the canal towpath along the Royal Canal from Ashtown to Westmanstown to a premium quality cycle and pedestrian route.

The feasibility of the Royal Canal for such facilities and as an improved recreational amenity is currently being examined. Among the issues being considered are:

  • Feasibility of providing a high quality continuous footpath/cycleway along the towpath
  • Potential to provide parallel routes where towpath route not feasible
  • Improvements to accessibility issues at interfaces with public roads
  • Improved amenity areas (car parking, picnic areas, angling, boating)
  • Environmental and heritage issues
  • Improved connectivity with local residential areas and adjacent rail and bus services
  • Integration with adjacent cycle routes (existing and proposed)

 Submissions or observations may be made in writing to Senior Executive Officer, Planning & Strategic Infrastructure Department, Fingal County Council, Main Street, Swords, Co Dublin to arrive no later than 5pm on 25 May 2012 or e-mail to [email protected]

Published in Inland Waterways

#INLAND WATERWAYS - It was a hotly anticipated find - but the image of what appeared to be a rare German submarine in the depths of Lough Foyle turned out to be a ghost.

RTÉ News reports that a team brought in to verify a sonar image captured by a search and rescue team from Mallow have confirmed that it was a 'sonic illusion'.

Northern Ireland's Environment Minister Alex Attwood called in the experts after the search team discovered what looked like the outline of a midget U-boat on the lough bed near Derry.

The possibility was a real one, as the lough had been a major naval base during the Second World War.

But a full survey of the lough revealed that the original image was an apparition caused by sonar distortion.

"There is no doubt for a moment there was a thrilling possibility which has now not come to pass," said the minister. "I do share a sense of disappointment."

RTÉ News has more on the story, including images and video, HERE.

Published in Inland Waterways

#INLAND WATERWAYS - Waterways Ireland has been advised by ESB Energy International that Ardnacrusha Lock is now fully pre-booked over the following periods:

Between midday on Friday 29 June and dusk on Sunday 1 July; and Between midday on Friday 6 July and dusk on Sunday 8 July.

This is to facilitate boats attending the Limerick/Shannon Estuary Rally.

Boat users that are planning to navigate between Limerick and Killaloe in late June early July should schedule passage through Ardnacrusha Lock outside of the periods listed above.

Published in Inland Waterways
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