Strategies for sea trout

 

SEA TROUT were top of the agenda at a recent briefing for Natural Resources Minister Fergus O’Dowd and his counterpart from Wales, Alun Davies, on progress of the Interreg-IVa Ireland-Wales-funded Celtic Sea Trout Project which ends next year.

The project team is working on developing a number of ways to support fisheries managers in assessing performance and to provide better management of this valuable species.

Sea trout are present in most coastal rivers discharging into the Irish Sea and the requirement to manage the species in a sustainable manner across the Ireland-Wales interface was strongly emphasised to both ministers.

By providing information on stock levels, genetics and their varied lifestyle, the project aims to enhance fisheries for the benefit of all stakeholders. Strengthening the sea trout contribution to rural economies is also important.

Sea trout life history variation may also contribute to understanding the effects of climate change.

Both ministers heard that angler engagement across the project provided important scale samples and that the project has served to increase awareness of the value of this excellent angling species.

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Congratulations to Peter Doherty of Clane Anglers on winning the Irish Trout Fly Fishing Associations National Rivers Championship on the Annalee River in Co Cavan last weekend.

The competition, hosted by Cavan Anglers as part of their 80th anniversary celebrations, attracted 20 competitors (five from each province) to compete for a place on the Irish team to fish the River Taff in Wales next year.

The Annalee lived up to its reputation as one of the finest trout rivers in Ireland by producing 203 eligible trout. The longest fish, at 46cm, fell to John Ruby from Mallow, Co Cork. Results: 1, P Doherty; 2, S McMurran; 3, A Sloane; 4, D Sinkus; 5, J Willis.

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Fishing out of Pontoon Bridge Hotel on Lough Conn, Patrick O’Sullivan and Brian Moran, from Boston in the US, had three trout while Jaques Refines and Jon Penet, of France, boated two for 1.4kg (3lb), taken on Green Peters. Also fishing out of Pontoon were Michelle Leidi and family, who had four trout and two perch, with Mr B Bernard, from Switzerland, recording four trout over two days.

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Shark fishing out from Courtmacsherry, Co Cork, continues to produce some great fish even though mackerel shoals are on the slim side, according to charter skipper Mark Gannon.

On a recent outing five shark were tagged, two lost and plenty of sightings close to the boat. The tagging programme has revealed that of two blues tagged in 2009, one was recaptured in March 2012 in Posnan, some 1,100km west of the Azores and the other in February 2012, recaptured 1,000km east of Newfoundland.

On the inshore and estuary marks, several bass to 4kg were caught near the Horse Rock and also at Woodpoint where sandeel bait was used.

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Anglers with specimen claims for shad and cyprinoids (roach, rudd and their hybrids) are requested to submit claims to the Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) by October 17th.

The sophisticated genetic analysis involved for the two groups takes a considerable amount of time and expertise. The submission date for claims has been brought forward to ensure they are processed in time for publication in the 2012 specimen fish report.

All other claims should be submitted to the specimen committee as soon as possible.

Note: The ISFC awards day will take place in Bewley’s Airport Hotel at 2.30pm on February 16th next year to coincide with the two-day Ireland Angling Show in the National Show Centre, Cloghran, Co Dublin.

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I experienced boat engine trouble last weekend on Lough Owel when the water pump impeller broke on my two-stroke 15hp Yamaha. Thanks to Pat Kennedy in OB Marine, Jamestown Business Park, Finglas, Dublin (01-9341855), the problem was fixed in jig time.


angling@irishtimes.com