RIVER RUNS DRY
Dry year and water abstraction to blame says association chairman
We rescued over 2,000 fish and also moved them to The Moor. There are many dead fish on the river bed, into the thousands
– Paul Jennings
KIND-HEARTED parents and volunteers have desperately been trying to save the lives of thousands of fish due to a section of a river drying up.
The stretch of the River Chess that runs near Thomas Harding School and Water Meadow car park in Chesham has been running out of water over the last month, and on Wednesday, September 30 the remaining few puddles dried up.
This has resulted in thousands of dead fish, mainly stickleback and a few bullheads, on the river bed.
Desperate to help, volunteers from the River Chess Association have been out and have rescued about 2,000 fish and moved them to The Moor, where the river is still flowing.
Chairman of the association Paul Jennings believes the river has dried up due to a dry winter, spring and summer as well as over abstraction by water companies to supply water to homes in Chesham and elsewhere.
Mr Jennings added: “The Environment Agency was informed and did come out to review the situation, but it will only implement a fish rescue if they are major fish. The ones in the upper Chess were all small fish. We rescued over 2,000 fish and also moved them to The Moor. There are many dead fish on the river bed, into the thousands.
“We have spoken with the Environment Agency and it is happy that these small fish are rescued by the public as long as they are released in the same river where there is flow. Rescued fish should not be released into other rivers.”
This is exactly what concerned parents Debby Cox and Caroline Masters have been doing. They have been down with buckets on several occasions and rehoming some of the fish in the river near The Moor.
Mrs Cox, who has also been down with her husband and two children, said: “I’m among a number of very concerned parents and, in fact, human beings.
“Hundreds of fish were piled upon each other flapping around in mud.
“This is very distressing to the children and adults alike. So many fish have died.
“Measures should be taken to prevent this happening to our wildlife.”
Mr Jennings has thanked Mrs Cox and her family and friends for helping and he is calling on more readers to help save the fish.
Have you tried to save the fish? Email bucksnews@ trinitysouth.co.uk.
Measures should be taken to prevent this happening
Dried up: Volunteers are attempting to rescue fish along a dried-up section
of the River Chess