Fish Stocks & Habitat

Looking after our fish stocks and managing the habitat lie at the heart of the work of the Board and Trust

Atlantic salmon is the dominant fish species on the Dee. There are also significant numbers of brown trout, generating a sea trout run and supporting a small sea trout fishery. There are also pike and perch present in the few lochs within the catchment, which are targeted by coarse anglers but, generally, do not support a fishery. There are also eels, lampreys (sea, river and brook species), flounder and stickleback.


The River Dee’s designation as a European Special Area of Conservation is partly in recognition of the importance of the salmon population (as well as pearl mussels and otters). The Dee District Salmon Fishery Board is a competent authority under the EU Habitats and Species Directive in terms of the Atlantic salmon component of the Special Area of Conservation designation on the Dee.


The work of the River Dee Board and Trust is focused on the protection of salmon and sea trout stocks and ensuring the river is a healthy thriving natural environment with good quality salmon spawning and rearing habitat.


Generally, where habitat is good, juvenile salmon numbers are good. The converse is always true; where habitat is poor, numbers of juvenile salmon are always poor and that is where we target our resources.


Read more about our work to provide unhindered passage for migratory fish and improve the in-stream and riparian habitat in the Dee catchment by following the links below:



A Million Trees to Save Our Salmon

January 30, 2020

The River Dee Trust has announced plans to plant a million native trees in one of the biggest nature restoration projects in the Cairngorms. The project will recreate areas of landscape that have been lost for 2000 years.

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