Catchment News

Mayo – community clean of the Castlebar River & Ballina Salmon Festival

Community Water Officer Mick Kane tells us how 4.5 kilometres of the Castlebar River was cleaned by the community in April 2018, and the River Moy Trust got involved with Ballina’s Salmon Festival in July 2018.

Community clean the Castlebar River

There was a great sense of the Meitheal around Castlebar on 20 April for an organised community clean-up of the Castlebar River. Volunteers from different community groups and voluntary organisations were joined by people from public bodies, resulting in lots people all prepared to get stuck in and do what was necessary on the day.

Groups and organisations involved were Mayo County Council, the Waters and Communities Office, students from GMIT Outdoor Education Course, Castlebar Tidy Towns, Inland Fisheries Ireland, the Environmental Protection Agency, Castlebar Kayak Club, Turlough Village Enhancement Group, Moy River Trust, Clean Coasts, South West Mayo Development Company, the Ballina Moy Search & Rescue and the Grainne Uaille Sub Aqua club.

The hard efforts of all involved resulted in a 4.5 Kilometre stretch of the Castlebar River from Lough Lannagh to Turlough being cleared of a massive amount of waste and litter including hundreds of bottles, cans, tyres, shopping trollies, fire extinguishers, and plastics. Huge thanks and credit goes to those who planned the event and to all the volunteers, community groups and public bodies who gave up their time to help. The Castlebar River is now much cleaner!

Ballina Salmon Festival: fun in the sun

Local children got to experience all the Moy Valley has to offer at the Salmon Festival on 10 July 2018. Kids aged 9-12 got to kick sample with the Mayo County Council team, led by Pamela Bergin. They learned all about what lives in their river, using magnifying glasses to identify various insects and bugs. The National Parks and Wildlife Service showed them what animals live along the Moy, and Ballycroy National Park even had some stuffed animals to show the kids, telling them what distinguished each species, what they fed on, and where you could see them in the valley.

Who needs hats when you can get up close and personal with Mount Falcon’s owl and falcon?

An Owl and a Peregrine Falcon also joined in the festivities – Mount Falcon’s Falconer Martin McPhillips brought them along to enjoy the day. The Moy River Trust brought a glass tank filled with some of the fish that lived in the river, and local anglers and ghillies showed the children how they fished the river, and gave the children a chance to capture their own salmon on the world famous Cathedral beat of the river.

Learning to fish on the Cathedral beat of the River Moy

Learn more:

You can contact the Moy Trust on 087 6159954 or

Who is involved?

Quite simply, everyone in Ireland has a role to play. This can be from something as simple as making sure you don’t pollute your local stream, or a local community working together to establish a Rivers Trust to enhance the rivers and lakes in their area, to a Government Department or Agency helping a Minister implement a new policy to help protect and enhance all our water bodies.

This website has been developed and is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is a collaboration between the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Local Authority Waters Programme.


Local Authority Waters Programme

The Local Authority Waters Programme coordinates the efforts of local authorities and other public bodies in the implementation of the River Basin Management Plan, and supports local community and stakeholder involvement in managing our natural waters, for everyone’s benefit.


Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,842 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives for each.


Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

The Department is responsible for making sure that the right policies, regulations and resources are in place to implement the Water Framework Directive, and developing a River Basin Management Plan and Programme of Measures to protect and restore our waters.