Brook Lamprey

March 4th, 2017

In these images, it is not the kingfisher that is the main subject, but the fish in its beak. It is called a Brook Lamprey and prior to 2015 was rarely seen in the UK as a result of water pollution, they have been absent from the upper reaches of some rivers for over 200 years. They depend on high quality river water containing gravel and silt and can only be seen for one month in the year. They don’t have jaws and the adults have suckers with teeth. They are a primitive species with a skeleton made of cartilage not bone and they existed before the dinosaurs. Lampreys were a favourite Royal dish made into a pie, the Queen was made one for her diamond jubilee, but the fish had to be imported as there were insufficient in the UK.