The regular trap and transport of salmon and trout in the River Oulujoki is set to begin. Finland’s first modern trap and transport facilities will be taken into use in Montta on the River Oulujoki on Saturday, 26 August 2017. The trap and transport facilities are a new solution to strengthen the population of migrating fish in the river Oulujoki in Finland.
Water flow is used to guide the fish swimming upstream into the facilities. The fish are then transferred from the pools by transport tanker truck to breeding areas in the Utosjoki and Kutujoki rivers. Some of the fish may be released into the river for the purpose of recreational fishing. Salmon and trout roe can be used also in fish farming at the Montta fish farm.
Fortum announced in autumn 2014 allocation of funding for the construction of modern trap and transport facilities at the Montta hydropower plant. At the same time, the company invited other interested stakeholders to participate in the project. Planning of the trap and transport facilities started in spring 2015 in collaboration with the Muhos, Utajärvi and Vaala municipalities and with the North Ostrobothnia ELY Centre. Construction started in spring 2016. Fortum’s share of the EUR 2.65 million funding is 80 per cent. The project has also been funded by the municipalities of Muhos, Utajärvi and Vaala. The project has also received the Finnish Government’s spearhead project funding from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.
“Montta’s trap and transport facilities are an excellent example of the power company’s initiative to develop revitalisation solutions for migrating fish in the River Oulujoki and elsewhere. The company has voluntarily invested in the solution in collaborative partnership with other actors in the area,” notes Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Jari Leppä.
Fish swim into the Montta trap and transport facilities from two differently oriented openings. The fish swimming upstream are guided into the facilities using the flow of water from a pool. The facilities have three water pumps that are used to create the flow, the strength of which is adjustable. Data on how flow rates and other factors, like the different openings, affect the salmon and trout runs will help in planning fishways and other trap and transport solutions in Finland and abroad.
“Practical data is needed because strengthening the natural lifecycle of migrating fish in a heavily constructed river requires long-term efforts and time. Regarding the River Oulujoki, the collaboration with municipalities, the local environmental authority, the fishing area and power companies has got off to a successful start and will continue, e.g., in the steering group for the trap and transport facilities,” says Marja Savolainen from Fortum.