Fisheries Management Students’ Study Tour to Dorset
11 students studying the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Fish Management recently enjoyed a study trip to Dorset.
The students set off by coach at 9am on their journey to Zeal’s Fish Farm in Dorset and, on arrival, were taken on a tour of the hatchery where they learnt about bio security and the raising and spawning of the fry. Here they were able to see the live feed systems, tanks and filter systems as well as some African Clawed Frogs which were being grown on for a research project about tissue growth. The students were able to see and learn about the systems used to monitor filtration, oxygen and water quality.
Afterwards the students were taught about grading methods and were given a demonstration of hand grading which is used to grade the Koi for quality. The tour then led to the outdoor ponds where the students witnessed a pond being drained down to harvest fish stocks.
Later that afternoon the students headed to Islands Carp Fishery - a 4.5 acre lake with 12 swims (fishing areas) - to prepare the lakes with stop nets for the following day. This also involved barrowing a whole truck load of stones around the site! In total, the students distributed approximately 4 wheelbarrow loads for each swim, in order to limit any damage that they might cause to the river bank the next day.
After a very long day and some very manual work the students treated themselves to a well-earned dinner and set up camp for the night.
Bright and early the next morning after breakfast, they started on the grading task to remove as many small carp (under 1lb) to 3 stock ponds. Details of the larger fish were documented for length, weight and health. The whole task took around 8 hours with 200 fish caught ranging from 1 to 22lb.
The students arrived back at Hadlow at 11pm tired and worn out but, despite the cold and wet weather, they all agreed that it was a fantastic learning experience.