A team of volunteers from Apex Tubulars could be found on beautiful Glen Clunie near Braemar on Sunday, pioneering a new volunteering activity for the River Dee Trust, debris dam building.

Claire Fleming from the River Dee Trust explains the purpose of debris dams: “Debris Dams are small structures built with locally sourced natural materials such as logs and small branches, that can help to better manage high water flow conditions, holding back water in minor ditches and channels during floods and regulating water flow, even releasing water in times of drought.

"They are an excellent activity for volunteers to get involved with and make a tangible impact. As River Dee Guardians, Ronnie and his team have plenty experience getting their hands dirty on our projects and were the perfect group to take on the first volunteer-powered debris dam building day.”

Severe flooding is just one of the climate-linked challenges impacting the river Dee, those who live and work on its littoral and, not forgetting its wildlife.

Through multiple river restoration projects, including its award-winning One Million Trees campaign, the River Dee Trust is delivering practical improvements to mitigate the risks of flooding, along with other related challenges, rising water temperatures and the devastating decline of the river’s biodiversity.

For the river’s wildlife, flooding has had dire consequences, water voles are at particular risk of drowning, while endangered Atlantic salmon spawning grounds and pearl mussel habitats are severely impacted by the destabilisation of riverbeds.

Volunteers at Glen Clunie

Volunteers at Glen Clunie

Ronnie Grant of Apex Tubulars said: “Despite the less than perfect weather conditions, our 11 volunteers constructed 12 debris dams in some pretty challenging locations before the weather got the better of us. Throughout, the team was in great spirits and feedback has been fantastic.

"We were delighted to road-test this new volunteer opportunity for the Trust, to work on these debris dams, learn why they are important and make a positive and lasting impact. At Apex, we take our role as a River Dee Guardian seriously and are fully committed to supporting the ongoing work of the Trust.”

To learn more about the River Dee Trust and becoming a River Dee Guardian contact claire@riverdee.org.

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