We have selected some issues that are of some importance to the Usk catchment area. These are likely to change over time. A good number of the issues relate to creating viable waterways for the flora and fauna in the Usk catchment.
The River Usk and tributaries is, under UK Law, a Special Site of Scientific Interest (SSSI) and is considered ‘At Risk’ — When covered by the European Directives it failed in some areas under the Water Framework Directive, Habitats Directive and Migratory Fish Directive. The Usk and its tributaries are under (i.e. not meeting) the conservation limit set by these Directives. In the ‘state of nature report’ (Welsh Government Report) they are recorded as failing.
There are many aspects to the creation of good habitat for migratory fish – and other living fauna and flora. They include:
- Fish Eating Birds and
Anglers and owners have little to no control over any of these because they are Welsh Government (WG) and Natural Resources Wales (NRW) remits. Many have not been revised in the past 25 years to take into account the changed circumstances. Abstraction has at last been addressed in that the Welsh Water Dwr Cymru have agreed to different and improved abstraction arrangements. The Wye and Usk Foundation played a critical role in achieving this positive result.
What anglers and owners have some control over are fishing practices and biosecurity.