Junction pool of the Rivers Little Exe and Barle; indicator of the upper river system’s health



This website is home to RETA - the River Exe & Tributaries Association. It outlines what RETA is, what we, RETA, do and the  work we are engaged in to restore the best salmon fishery in the south west  of England -- the River Exe.  Like many English, and other, salmon rivers, migratory fish stocks here are diminishing and we seek to halt that decline.

RETA is the one voice of the river that seeks to act as the guardian of the River Exe and its riverine ecology --- its fish, (especially salmonids), its flora and and its fauna -- 'from moor to sea', as in the two photos below:


The upper Exe system's River Barle tributary high in the Exmoor National Park  

The River Exe estuary below Exeter  (photo by kind permission of Dominic Garnett)


To that end, RETA ...

Promotes a voluntary code of conduct to safeguard existing fish stocks, encouraging careful release of most salmon caught-see this link: Catch and Release
Promotes the protection of the river from invasive species
Interfaces with all relevant statutory and other bodies and organisations   organisations   organisations
Scrutinises planning and abstraction applications  
Works on all hydro applications to minimize damage and maximize benefit 

Limits estuary netting and other forms of pressure on the river and its wildlife

Seeks to limit disruptive and fish damaging effects from leisure and recreational activities
  Runs the River Exe Project to reverse the decline in salmon numbers and to return the river to abundance to the benefit of the whole riverine ecology

Promotes and manages river enhancement activities

Negotiates with the Environment Agency to achieve salmon season extensions

Manages the 'Fish the Exe' Scheme to ensure access to the river is available to all members and membership is open to anyone and every one
Represents the river, in conjunction with the South West Rivers Association in  support of lobbying activities to influence relevant government and other policies
Welcomes and encourages membership by anyone with an interest in the health of the River Exe and its tributaries
Focuses on the river and all its tributaries from their sources right down to the sea -- 'from moor to sea'
Monitors pollution incidents and runs two AMIs, ('Anglers Monitoring Initiative'), 'Riverfly' schemes to monitor regularly invertebrate abundance levels. 
for sl    tSeeks to support local fishing clubs with their own habitat conservation and improvements
Participates, and encourages participation,in the National 'Cormorant Watch'  scheme
RETA membership currently stands at around 250 enthusiasts 


This website is the means for it to post alert warnings on future events that may be at variance with the well-being of the river and its tributaries. Please click onto our Membership  and Contact pages for more information on membership application, RETA's constitution, gift aid donation forms and more.  Importantly you can use this website as a contact route to RETA and to enable us to keep you up to date both now and in the future. The website is currently edited by tom_j_arthur@hotmail.com


Click here for contact page and for membership 


We would like to point out that we  do not have any general legal jurisdiction over the river. This is the responsibility of the planning agencies and the Environment Agency, EA,with whom we have good working relationship and partnership working  on several subjects including the River Exe Project. If you see, or suspect, any incidents on the river, such as pollution, dead fish, poaching etc, for quick action please phone the EA's incident hotline  0800 807060.  This link gives you more information of what else the EA covers.

We also have very close links with Fish Legal.


Above: the presence of migratory salmon in a river is the best barometer of the health of the environment