Fishing for secrets

 

ANGLING NOTES:DUBLIN’S best-kept secret was revealed last weekend as scores of angling enthusiasts converged on Corkagh Park in Clondalkin to sample the fishing at the revamped Dublin angling venue. The event was organised by Dublin Angling Initiative (DAI) to introduce young people to the art of fly-fishing.

In glorious sunshine, the morning session involved casting instruction on the green with three of Ireland’s most qualified instructors: Paddy McDonnell, Glenda Powell and Eamon Conway. They demonstrated the art of flycasting on a one-to-one basis to some enthusiastic young people.

Following light refreshments, it was time to put their new skills to the test with the help of some international fly anglers, including Noel Shiels and Gerry Heaslip. The juniors, in teams of four, hurried to take the best vantage points at the lakeside.

To ensure a high catch, 650 triploid and rainbow trout had been introduced the previous week. This paid off and landing nets were in big demand from all corners of the lake within minutes of cast-off. It was gratifying to see the excitement of the young anglers, some of whom were catching trout on the fly for the first time. The group of eight from Dundalk and District Brown Trout Anglers Association certainly enjoyed their day. Kelvin Kelly, 13, and Stephen Murphy, 17, caught at least five quality fish, some of which weighed 1.5kg.

Corkagh Park Fisheries is managed on behalf of South Dublin County Council by BK Management Ltd. Its managing director, Brian Begley, said: “In January 2010, we took over the running of the fisheries. We work closely with DAI and welcome clubs, schools and individual anglers.”

Corkagh Park Fisheries is open all year round. The fly-only lake has rainbow trout to 9.1kg (20lb), and the coarse lake has six species including carp to specimen weight. Facilities include a coffee shop and fishing tackle outlet. It costs €20 for a full day and €15 a half-day. Over 65s pay just €10 for a full day. The company also manages the adjoining Camac Valley Camping Park.

For more information, contact: enquiries@corkaghparkfishery.ie or call 01-459 2625.

Scientists from Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) are dismayed following the publication of the National Implementation Group (NIG) report on a strategy for improved pest control on Irish salmon farms. The findings are “disappointing and insufficient to protect wild salmon and sea trout,” they say.

The report identifies serious failures in controlling sea lice in spring and expresses a desire to exclude all unnecessary treatments. “This could ultimately result in localised extinction of sea trout populations,” the IFI says.

Disappointing aspects of the report include the admission that a number of sites in the west of Ireland are unable to control sea lice during the critical spring period; that the “management cell approach” has failed in two areas over the past two years, and the failure to acknowledge mandatory requirements for treatment of ovigerous lice at 0.3 levels.

A key finding was that the increases in infestation were not isolated incidents. On the contrary, “sea lice levels breached protocol levels in 10 of 12 inspections in one particular area”, IFI says. Ultimately, these breaches will affect salmon and sea trout migration.

Dr Ciaran Byrne, IFI chief executive, said: “As the statutory agency charged with the protection, conservation and management of sea trout, and as the major rationale for the control of sea lice is to protect the ‘outwardly migrating wild smolts’, IFIs absence from NIG is a serious oversight.”

IFI says the opportunity now exists to review the location of salmon farms and re-site them to ensure protection of wild salmon and sea trout while also meeting the needs of the commercial fish farm sector. “This should be done as a matter of priority.”

angling@irishtimes.com