Electrafish Limited - company history:


Originally the main business activity of Dr Alec Wortley's company W Controls was the design and manufacture of speed controllers for machine tools and conveyor belts, running machines as well as magnet controllers, inverters, precipitator controllers, and transfer printing machines. Customers included Rolls Royce of Derby, High Duty Alloys of Redditch, Babcock and Wilcox of Tipton, Jones and Shipman machine tools of Leicester, Bates Textile Machines of Leicester, Sport Engineering and Boxmag Rapid of Birmingham, and many coal fired power stations. This branch of the business was sold in 1980 and at that time it was decided to concentrate on designing and manufacturing high quality, reliable electrofishing machines. Dr Alec Wortley was the original founder of a very successful electrofishing equipment manufacturing company in Stourbridge which later moved to Wolverhampton, and is now trading as Electrafish.

When this electrofishing company began in 1975 under the name W Controls there was only one other reputable company manufacturing these products within the UK, Millstream based in Malvern. Products made by the successor company to W Controls are still widely employed by The Environment Agency in the UK and these machines were all designed and carefully manufactured with reliability and effectiveness in mind. Invoices showing electrofishing equipment sales from Dr Alec Wortley's company in the 1980s can be seen here.

The original electrofishing machines were AC/DC output machines for use in the relatively high conductivity waters of East Anglia. The photograph on the left depicts a very dirty original electrofishing machine made in 1980 which is still fully operational today. This photo dramatically portrays the adverse conditions to which all electrofishing machines are subjected during on site operations. Later, a wide range of electrofishing machines were developed with outputs of Pulsed DC, Smooth DC, variable AC, high frequency, Pulsed DC and various combinations of all these outputs as well as cycling outputs, where the output waveform cycles at preset adjustable intervals between Pulsed DC and Smooth DC.

Before long universities discovered the benefits of using electrofishing equipment as a tool for carrying out fisheries surveys and investigations into salmonids, coarse fish and invertebrates. Eventually generator powered and battery powered electrofishing machines were developed having higher output voltages for use in very low conductivity waters. Standard electrofishing machines have outputs of 0 to 200/250 volts DC but new designs have now been developed and are in production having variable output voltages from 0 to 400, 500, 600, 800, 1000 or 1500 volts DC with power levels for generator powered machines up to 20 Kilowatts and battery powered electrofishing machines of 180 and 400 watts rating.

The new company Electrafish Limited benefits from the experience of servicing and testing of operational electrofishing equipment since 1978 and so is able to now in the 21st Century offer the greatest experience in design and manufacture of all types of electrofishing machines including boxes, generators, anodes and cathodes. This is demonstrated by our policy, unmatched by other companies, of offering a 3 year warranty on every electrofishing machine, subject to conditions.