Lake Bjellandsvatnet is one of the richest wetland areas in Sveio. But, everything has its limit, and the supply of nutrients can be too much. This is what was about to happen in Lake Bjellandsvatnet.
Deep down between the stone polished phyllite bedrock in Bordalsgjelet canyon, there is a cascading river. In close cooperation with hard polishing stones, the water has carved into the bedrock for thousands of years - and is still doing so today.
"So many and such big potholes as are found at Eikelandsosen, we don't see other places in western Norway, and as beautifully polished as the mountainside is along the river up to Koldal , one would look a long time to see anywhere else. There is much to dazzle a geologist's eyes. If only these features could bring others the same joy!"
Water discharge at the outlet of the Ekso into Eidsfjord was halved after the big hydropower development in the mountainous area between Modalen and Eksingedalen and further southward toward Evanger in the 1960s, 70s and 80s. In an attempt to amend the changed environmental conditions in the waterway the developer built 35 small dams in the river.
In the late 1800s, Ekso was known among the nobility in England as having among the best salmon rivers. In summer the Lords could haul in big fish of up to 25 kg. In return, the townsfolk were paid for fishing rights, lodging and local assistance.
There is still life to be found that is just “hanging on a string”. The Etne river has been the most important river for sports- fisherman in Hordaland after salmon fishing in Vosso was temporarily forbidden. As late as 2000, 4 tonnes of salmon and sea trout were taken out of the Etne river, the best fishing for 10 years. In the whole of the county there are only 15-20 rivers that can compete with this haul.
If we study the group of islands south of Selbjørns Fjord from the air or on a sea map, we will notice that many of the islands are elongated and lie systematically in rows. The islands are divided by long sounds, for example Trollosen, Nuleia and Hjelmosen, which are oriented in a south-southeast to north-northwesterly direction.
There are many river networks out by the coast and they tend to be small and unassuming. The farmer has relied upon the watercourses to run his mill and saw, and it may be that the trout have given him a good source of food in years when the ocean fish failed. In our time, these river networks are being rediscovered for their value in recreation and outdoor life, and several places, tourist trails have been built in order to fully enjoy them.