By Claire Williamson
Hundreds of salmon caught by illegal poachers are believed to have died because of the blistering heat across Northern Ireland.
The Loughs Agency in Londonderry, which tries to conserve fisheries in the Foyle area, usually frees fish if it finds them caught in a net, but it said the fish are dying before officials can get to them.
It is understood that this is resulting in hundreds more fish dying than usual.
John McCartney, director of the Loughs Agency, said: "Unfortunately with the high temperatures the fish are so stressed that when they get caught in these poaching nets they are dying within minutes."
This is unwelcome news for the fishing industry as reports indicate that overall fish stocks in Northern Ireland rivers have been steadily declining over the years.
Wildlife on land has also been affected by the soaring temperature and protection groups are calling for help from the public.
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) has issued a warning to encourage people to play their part in helping their garden wildlife survive these sweltering temperatures.
Judith Carville from the RSPB said that the dehydration of garden favourites is the biggest worry, and added: "It's only detrimental if people don't look after the wildlife. More....