Fish Surveys

FiveRivers are a nationally-respected company providing industry standard fish surveys and assessments across all waterbody types.

Fish are excellent indicators of a waterbody’s health: analysis of species present and their abundance gives an insight into the condition of our rivers, lakes, estuaries and seas. Fish surveys enable us to safely monitor fish populations, that contribute to overall assessments of ecosystem health.

Using the latest survey techniques – including electric fishing, seine netting, hydroacoustics, eDNA and fyke netting – we can assess species, fish age, abundance and densities to provide a robust assessment of the fish community present. We apply our experience to ensure equipment selection and methodology applied are right for first time for each site, and meets the aim of the project.

Working with clients across the UK, FiveRivers plan and manage projects that require robust fish population data to inform environmental assessments, water resources planning and strategy, habitat enhancement opportunities and restoration design, and Invasive Non-Native Species (INNS) management.

We can work with you to ensure that fish survey design and data outputs are fit for purpose, providing a robust and cost-effective snapshot of a fish community to meet the objectives of your project. Our expertise in fish surveys ensures that our data meets all industry best practice and regulatory requirements.

5R team during the fish survey process
The Problems

Fish Populations

Fish by their nature, are challenging to survey and specialist techniques are required to gain a better understanding of fish populations and their habitats. There are various ways in which fish surveys can be carried out, each with their own applications that our team of fisheries experts can advise our clients in line with optimal survey seasons and project objectives. In addition to electric fishing, seine netting and fyke netting, our fish survey techniques include the use of (but not limited to) state-of-the-art hydroacoustic echo sounding equipment and emerging eDNA technology.

Our clients require scientifically robust fish population surveys for varied reasons:

  • To collect data on populations to feed into Ecological Impact Assessments (EcIA) for development schemes.
  • To inform water resources planning; fish are excellent bio-indicators of river health.
  • To assess the conversation status of designated fish species, particularly in SAC rivers.
  • Pre- and post-project appraisals to assess any positive or negative impacts, inform mitigation strategies and identify opportunities for habitat enhancement.
  • To aid localised investigations to help identify issues affecting fish, such as barriers to migration or point source pollution.
  • Stock assessments to inform fishery management, particularly in commercial fisheries.
Fish survey techniques
The Solutions

Bespoke Solutions to Fish Surveys

At FiveRivers, we’re specialists in the design and delivery of fish surveys to assess fish populations in freshwater and estuarine habitats. Our fisheries experts have a monitoring or survey solution for all habitat types and species – whether your project driver is baseline assessment, pollution investigation or regulatory compliance, our team are here to advise. Our experts are vastly experienced working on protected and sensitive sites and we will obtain all necessary permits and consents on your behalf to ensure our surveys and your project proposals are compliant with legislation.

Our fish surveys comply with Water Framework Directive (WFD) methodologies, guaranteeing reliability and comparability with Environment Agency data sets. As a nationally-respected company known for our high-quality services and competitive prices, you can rest assured you’re in safe hands with FiveRivers.

Tom Grayling - Director of Monitoring and Natural Capital at FiveRivers (5R)

Contact us

Talk to an expert in Fish Surveys

Tom Grayling

Director of Monitoring & Natural Capital

Get in touch by either phone or email to speak with Martin and discuss your needs. Alternatively click the button below to complete our contact form.