Angling Notes: Inland Fisheries Ireland announces line-up for Go Fishing Week

Connacht Predator Anglers’ annual competition for the longest fish saw club members submit photos in the year-long competition

Tipperary angler Kevin Leahy with a fine bream from Lough Derg

Tipperary angler Kevin Leahy with a fine bream from Lough Derg

 

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has announced the line-up for Go Fishing Week 2021. The week is a national celebration of fishing, and this year is being held online with a programme of virtual events, competitions and social media content.

All events are free, and accessible for all to join in online. The “Lunch & Learn” webinar details are as follows:

Sunday, April 25th – Dr William Roche from the Irish Specimen Fish Committee will talk on Irish Specimen Fish– What’s the Story.

Monday, April 26th – Bernard Cahill, education and sport development executive at Water Safety Ireland, will talk on Water Safety for Anglers.

Tuesday, April 27th – Evelyn Cusack, head of forecasting at Met Éireann, will talk about “How the weather on our inland lakes is forecast, and the importance of knowing the weather for angling safety.”

Wednesday, April 28th – Brian Coghlan, research officer at IFI, will talk on Barriers to Fish Migration. Catherine Hayes, IFI, will give the talk Something Fishy Programme – a Lesson for Teachers!

Thursday, April 29th – Dr Tara Gallagher and Nicola O’Gorman from research and development at IFI will speak about Ireland’s Rare Fish.

Friday, April 30th – Dr Ciaran Byrne, IFI, will talk on Climate Change Impacts on our Inland Fisheries.

Saturday, May 1st – Prof Ken Whelan, research director at Atlantic Salmon Trust, will speak on The Amazing life of Atlantic salmon at sea.

Along with the webinars there is a range of podcasts including one on Wildlife of the Garavogue River, “How to…” videos, blogs, competitions and lots more on IFI social media pages.

Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/inlandfisheriesireland and Twitter: https://twitter.com/InlandFisherIE. Use the hashtag #GoFishingWeek2021 when posting about events and competitions associated with Go Fishing Week.

As part of the event IFI is running a My Favourite Fishing Place photo competition. This is a chance to share a place where you like to fish and to share some of those fishing adventures.

The competition is open to those over 16 years of age; for those under 16 a parent/guardian may submit the content. Winner will receive fishing tackle to the value of €100 and additional prizes for runner-up and special categories.

Closing date for entries is 5pm Tuesday, May 4th, 2021. For more information on the competition and how to apply visit www.fisheriesireland.ie/lovefishing.

To learn more about what is happening overall, visit www.fisheriesireland.ie/gofishingweek.

****

The Connacht Predator Anglers’ (CPA) annual competition for the longest fish came into its own during these restricted times. Club members fishing within 5km access of Lough Corrib were able to enjoy fishing individually yet by submission of photos participate in the year-long competition.

Members entered by producing images of their catch on a measuring board approved by the committee. When travel restrictions are eased and there is the ability to fish alongside one other, we can expect to see more of these fine specimens coming through.

Evaldas Gusarovas of the Connacht Predators Club with the longest pike of 106cm from Lough Corrib
Evaldas Gusarovas of the Connacht Predators Club with the longest pike of 106cm from Lough Corrib

Longest fish in each of the three categories so far this year is: pike 106cm; ferox trout 77cm, wild brown trout ferox 73cm.

The CPA, as a member of the National Coarse Fishing Federation of Ireland (Ncffi), has fish welfare at heart and operates a strict catch-and-release policy. Measuring boards to determine length of fish, a quick photo and all are returned to the water alive.

The competition, which runs to the end of the year, offers prizes for the longest pike, trout and perch. For details of membership contact info@connachtpredatoranglers.ie.

Ncffi continues to work with Sport Ireland and Return to Sport Group and looks forward to a safe return to freshwater angling. Members are urged to familiarise themselves with Government guidance and the latest information at www.ncffi.ie/covid19.

****

Fishing could not come soon enough for Munster angler Kevin Leahy. With no water within 5km, Tipperary resident Kevin was delighted to see the travel restrictions ease so he could get back on the water.

“After three months finally it was time. No more tying of rigs and cleaning gear – I was going fishing! Tipperary is not renowned for its coarse fishing, and with the banks of the Lower Shannon not yet within reach, would I chance a session on one of the small ponds for a tench or rudd?

“With that cold wind all week I didn’t fancy my chances and wanted to make the most of my fishing freedom. So at silly o’clock I was at the mighty Lough Derg hoping for a tussle with a shoal of bream, hybrids or roach.

“Fishing a top and bottom slider float rig in 30 feet of water the roach obliged, with the fishing steady all day producing a catch of 8oz to 1.5lb for an estimated 40lb. The highlight of the day was a battler of a perch on a grain of sweetcorn, which surprisingly weighed only 2lb. He was up for a quick photo before returning straight back to the water and his vegetarian lifestyle.

Kyle O’Mahoney (10) with one of his two trout while fishing with his dad on Lough Mask
Kyle O’Mahoney (10) with one of his two trout while fishing with his dad on Lough Mask

No bream or hybrids for me, but who cares I’m back fishing. Roll on the summer, and the hope of catching up with my club mates for the banter on the bank!’’

(Kevin is a member of the Munster Coarse Anglers’ Club, affiliated to Ncffi.

*****

Kyle O’Mahoney (aged 10), caught two trout while fishing with his dad off Devenish Island on Lough Mask on a Cock Robin Dabbler. Both fish were sportingly released.

*angling@irishtimes.com

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