Although technically still february a week ago the Sunday morning had a real spring feel to it. It was also the day I was due to do the invertebrate monitoring on the local beck.
Of late opportunities of reasonable water levels have been very few so it was important I took the chance. It was also an excuse to get into the river something not to be ignored.
The recent weeks of continuous high waters have as well as doing a fair bit of damage have also given the rivers a bloody good spring clean. The deep marginal banks of leaves and silt that seem to have persisted for the last few years have been swept away
This area near one of my invert sites was pretty much covered in a silt and now is a lovely stream bed of clean gravel.
Even the kick sample was clean with no fine sediment to kick up and cloud the tray. Together with little in the way of suspended vegetable matter its cleaner than it has been for years
The usual cuplprits were there : there were a few of these .
And a suprisingly large number of these
And a few of these
The february sunshine even encouraged a few nymphs to transform in the sample tray. this one didnt get very far, but was interesting to watch and I got to thinking how a few short tufts of CDC would look like the crippled wings below.
This little gravel island was under water for probably six weeks solid and yet these little snowdrops survived unscathed.
Something else to survive unscathed was our new fish pass that has emerged completely intact after a couple of months of constant battering. Fish were seen ascending the pass before christmas but its unlikely that the redds they cut escaped from been washed out by the high waters. It is less than a month now to when I will be casting a line here. It cant come to soon.