Annacotty weir on the Mulkear River provided a wonderful backdrop this week for the amazing sight of large numbers of Atlantic Salmon running the weir. Recent weeks of heavy rain have increased water levels dramatically in the Mulkear River over the very low water levels for much of September. This increase in water levels has been a major trigger for the recent salmon runs. Both large and smaller fish have been witnessed running Annacotty weir to move back upstream from their North Atlantic feeding grounds and begin spawning throughout the Mulkear catchment.
This annual phenomenon was photographed with great skill by Dominic Moloney (www.dominicmoloney.com / e-mail email@example.com / 086 3112526) who has kindly forwarded this image on to MulkearLIFE. Please note that it has come to the attention of MulkearLIFE (on the 14 Nov 2014) that this image, sent to MulkearLIFE and posted here on the project website and related Facebook page on the 12 November 2014, is a digitally manipulated image of salmon jumping. This has been confirmed by the photographer Mr. Dominic Moloney who created the montage. MulkearLIFE would like to thank Dr. William O Connor of the Old River Shannon Research Group for highlighting this. MulkearLIFE regrets any misrepresentation created by this image and apologises for any misunderstanding created by the posting of Mr. Moloney’s montage of salmon jumping at Annacotty weir. It is not the policy of MulkearLIFE to manipulate images.
What MulkearLIFE can confirm is the fact that very significant numbers of Atlantic salmon have been observed running Annacotty weir since Sunday. Large numbers of Atlantic salmon began moving back into the Mulkear system in October with significant movement in the second half of the month. Another significant run was recorded from early November. The current run is confirmed by fish counter data recording fish passage immediately upstream of Annacotty weir.
Many of the larger salmon witnessed this week were seen simply powering their way up the face of the weir, while others managed to achieve passage via the fish pass, the ’Denil’ pass, which is located in the centre of the weir. This run is expected to continue for the remainder of this month and hopefully into December 2014, as was the case in previous years. It is expedited that the current high water levels will continue for several weeks.
MulkearLIFE is delighted with the number of salmon returning to the catchment during this current run which hopefully will continue for the next number of months.