The Waterville Lakes & Rivers Trust, formed by concerned volunteers in 2016, is one of the new Rivers Trusts to be set up in Ireland and is currently aspiring to Charitable Status. Its remit is to protect the fresh and coastal waters of the Iveragh Peninsula.
The Rivers Trust Movement, originally started in the UK, now covers the whole of Ireland and we are seeing new Rivers Trusts being set up to better involve local communities in the care and protection of their own fresh and saltwater environments.
The catalyst for the establishment of the Trust in Waterville was the year on year decline, both in the runs of Atlantic Salmon into the catchments and in the stocks of the unique multi sea winter strain of sea trout, for which Waterville is famous throughout the world. These species are now under serious threat, particularly in their saltwater environment.
The new Trust is currently running three programmes, to try to mitigate against the marine threats to these iconic species, which are initially aimed at conserving the lakes, rivers and streams of both the Cummeragh and Inny Catchments in the Waterville area.
We are also working on education programs to help raise awareness within our communities on the value and importance of these species and our freshwater ecosystems.