Scotland to save wild salmon by planting millions of trees next rivers
We all know that majority of the water bodies around the world have been experiencing uncontrolled warming because of several effects from climate heating. Fisheries scientists have found rivers in the Highlands and uplands are too warm in summer for wild Atlantic salmon and thus increasing the threat to the survival of the species.
Wild salmon can live happily when the temperature of the water is around 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius). They cannot survive the temperature of waters at 91.4 degrees Fahrenheit (33 degrees Celsius).
This uncontrolled warming is threatening marine life and the surrounding ecosystem. Wild salmon is one of the species that is suffering from this warming. But by planting trees near water bodies, we can reduce this unprecedented warming and save marine living beings. So, Scotland is aiming to save wild salmon by planting millions of trees.
This huge decline in the numbers of wild salmon is caused by numerous factors such as climate change affecting the availability of food for salmons, weirs, and other obstructions in rivers, sea lice attracted by fish farms, bycatch by trawlers at sea, and poor river quality.
“These rivers and burns are the nursery ground for young fish and it’s the young fish which will be affected by summer temperatures—their feeding and growth rates are affected. If it gets hotter, we will see fish dying,” said Lorraine Hawkins, river director for the Dee District Salmon Fishery Board.
Fisheries on the River Dee in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, have planted 250,000 seedlings and saplings near the riversides. They’re now aiming to plant a million trees in Dee’s catchment before 2035. The trees will include Scots pine, birch, willow, native rowan aspen, juniper, and hawthorn. Scotland’s Marine scientists said that only 35% of Scotland’s rivers that stretch for 64,000 miles (103,000km) only have adequate tree cover.
Other Fishery boards in Scotland have already done similar tree-planting projects to protect water bodies from warming by giving essential shade. These trees will act as a shade for the water bodies by lowering the water temperature. The saplings are protected by fences to prevent attacks from deers and other animals. Lorraine Hawkins said that these tree-planting programs improved the overall health and biodiversity of rivers across the uplands. Not only that, but these programs also increased insect life, leaf fall, managing essential nutrients, and flood control.
“We’ve seen situations where the temperatures in our rivers are approaching critical levels for our salmon, temperatures that they can’t tolerate. This will get worse. We need to grow trees now to create that cooling shade,” said Alan Wells, the director of Fisheries Management Scotland.
Planting these trees will boost biodiversity, control flooding, minimize soil erosion, control water temperature, protect marine living beings, and manage nutrients for the soil and water.
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