Species found within this stretch of the river included trout, salmon, lamprey and eels. Although the new channel is currently less wooded, creating a re-meandered channel has increased the length of the river and increased the complexity of the gravel bed and banks in comparison to the old, straightened channel.
In the short term, the tree cover has reduced. However, the embedded root plates and tree tops in the banks of the river simulate the benefits of riparian woodland. Some of the banks will be planted with trees donated by the Woodland Trust in the winter 22/23 to encourage riparian woodland to develop. We anticipate considerable natural regeneration of trees and shrubs on the site in the coming years. The health of the fish population will be monitored by the Cromarty Fisheries Board, contributing to research on re-meandering as a management tool for our river ecosystems.
The initial funding provided by the Pebble Trust was crucial in enabling this River Peffery Restoration Project to go ahead. The beneficiaries of which include biodiversity, the local community and climate.
Further projects planned as a result of the River Peffery Restoration Project. The River Peffery Wet Woodland Project aims to create 2.3 ha of wet woodland on the south side of the Peffery floodplain at Fodderty and work on this will commence in spring 2023.
We have also recently received funding for the River Peffery Catchment Project. This presents an opportunity to plan, and implement, ecological restoration and natural flood management techniques within the whole catchment, helping to reduce the flood risk to Dingwall whilst enabling nature to thrive and will be carried out in the first half of 2023.