ENVIRONMENT Agency fisheries experts will be stocking 23,000 fish into two rivers and five stillwater fisheries in the North-East next week.

Fish will be released into waters including the River Skerne near Darlington and the River Wear in Durham as part of the Environment Agency’s ongoing plans to develop and restore rivers and stillwater fisheries in the region.

There are 8,000 barbel, chub and roach destined for the River Skerne below Darlington to help restore fish stocks.

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And 4,000 chub and roach are destined for the River Wear in Durham.

Five stillwaters across the region will receive 11,000 roach, bream, tench, rudd and crucian carp to help restore fish stocks and improve angling.

The Environment Agency releases fish into the waterways annually and target fish stocking activity using data from national fish surveys to identify where there are problems with poor breeding and survival.

Jon Shelley, Fisheries Team Leader said: “We are pleased that we can provide these fish for stocking as part of our commitment to rod licence paying anglers.

"Restoration and the creation of new fisheries for all people to enjoy, is a very important aspect to our work.”

The fish all come from the Environment Agency’s Fish farm at Calverton, in Nottinghamshire, where around 450,000 fish are produced to stock rivers across the country each year.