Leap of faith as salmon draw crowds at Shrewsbury weir

Salmon are putting on a spectacular show in Shropshire at the moment as they head upstream on their annual migration.

Andrew Fusek Peters snapped this fantastic shot of a salmon leaping on the Severn
Andrew Fusek Peters snapped this fantastic shot of a salmon leaping on the Severn

The dramatic leaps are providing local photographers with an opportunity to catch some incredible action shots at the weir in Sydney Avenue, Shrewsbury.

Andrew Fusek Peters is one of those who has been out with his lens and caught this shot. Chris Bainger from the Environment Agency tweeted that dozens of people were lining the banks of the Severn to watch the salmon run.

Chris Bainger from the Environment Agency caught sight of people watching the Salmon run

There is a fish pass at the side of the weir that allows fish to swim upstream but many salmon decide to just go for the jump anyway.

While hundreds of the magnificent fish are making the leap of faith to get upstream on the Severn to spawn, for one fish, it was a bit of a flop.

Robin Bennett captured this photo of the Salmon in Shrewsbury

Photographer Robin Bennett joined others at the weir in Sydney Avenue to watch the spectacle and captured some remarkable images, including one of a salmon that didn't quite make the leap.

The poor fish above landed on the side of the weir and had to fight his way back into the river.

Chris Bainger from the Environment Agency tweeted that #SalmonWatch seemed to be the on trend pastime in Shrewsbury as dozens lined the banks of the Severn to watch the salmon run.

Robin Bennett captured this photo of the Salmon in Shrewsbury

The Canal and River Trust is pushing ahead with its ‘Unlocking the Severn’ project which is creating fish passes at six barriers on the Severn and its River Teme tributary.

Unlike salmon, many fish are simply unable to leap the obstacles so the fish passes allow species like the shad to swim up above for instance a weir in small, manageable steps.

In total the work will restore 158 miles of river habitat and the trust says that as well as helping the shad, this will allow free passage for other important and endangered migratory fish species, such as salmon and eel.

Robin Bennett captured this photo of the Salmon in Shrewsbury

"Having more fish eggs and very young fish in these higher areas of the river - including shad spawning for the first time in 170 years - will also provide more food for insects.

"More insects and young fish on the river provide food for other animals and birds. This positive effect cascades through the food web and benefits all the wildlife in the river’s ecosystem," a spokesman for the trust said.

This Saturday is designated World Fish Migration Day, with events taking place on every continent.

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