Angling Notes: Lough Owel fundraising competition ‘last throw of the dice’ for 2021

Updates from Wicklow and Waterford, plus Dún Laoghaire RNLI crew on the small screen

Gerry Heaslip (right) receiving his first prize from club secretary Stan Keon, following the fundraising competition on Lough Owel, last Sunday

Gerry Heaslip (right) receiving his first prize from club secretary Stan Keon, following the fundraising competition on Lough Owel, last Sunday

 

With the game angling season now firmly closed for 2021, the focus turned to Lough Owel in Mullingar last Sunday for the club’s annual fundraising competition, primarily geared to offset costs of next year’s stocking programme.

Conditions on the day were reasonably good with sporadic sunshine, cloud and a soft breeze. Fishing too was quite good for the 42 anglers to enjoy the “last throw of the dice” with about 15 fish weighed in (one fish per angler) including one beauty of 4lb 8oz for Dublin angler Gerry Heaslip.

Speaking to club secretary Stan McKeon he said Owel is unique in terms of crayfish. The brown-backed crays are an extremely rare species and are native in our lake. Unfortunately, as the rainbow trout eat them, we have been advised to only stock brown trout.

On that note, he said the club is anxious to improve the already resident wild trout stock. “We have teamed with Inland Fisheries Ireland’s hatchery in Mullingar, who kindly allow us to use their facility to “bring on” our wild trout fingerlings to smolts and then for release back into Owel,” he said.

Thanks was expressed to all the sponsors on the day, in particular local jeweller and angling shop owner David O’Malley for his donation of a power drill as first prize.

Annamoe Trout Fishery in Co Wicklow produced this magnificent rainbow trout for Dublin angler Tony McCrave
Annamoe Trout Fishery in Co Wicklow produced this magnificent rainbow trout for Dublin angler Tony McCrave

Annamoe Trout Fishery in Co Wicklow produced a magnificent rainbow trout for Tony McCrave of over 3kg. On the same day, the same angler managed a further two fish of about 4kg. All fish were released.

Waterford Trout Fishing Association, based in Kilmeaden, is hosting two separate competitions on Carrigavantry and Knockaderry Reservoirs over the October bank holiday weekend.

On the Saturday, a charity competition is scheduled for Carrigavantry with all proceeds going to the Waterford City River Rescue. The unit is a voluntary service whose main objective is to provide rescue on lakes, rivers and tributaries on an all-year round basis.

The competition is catch and release with barbless hooks. Fishing is from 10am to 4pm Entry fee is €40 which includes dinner in the Sweep Bar in Kilmeaden. There are still a few places left.

The annual Knockaderry Cup will be held on the Sunday. However, this competition is now full.

Club secretary Michael Sheehan can be contacted at 086-107 3086. “My holiday weekend is going to be hectic,” he said.

Dún Laoghaire RNLI all-weather lifeboat and inshore lifeboat on training manoeuvres in Dublin Bay
Dún Laoghaire RNLI all-weather lifeboat and inshore lifeboat on training manoeuvres in Dublin Bay

The Dún Laoghaire RNLI crew will be taking to the small screen tomorrow evening (Tuesday 19th) at 8pm, as they feature in the ninth episode of the BBC TV series Saving Lives at Sea.

Now in its sixth series, the 10-part documentary showcases the lifesaving work of the RNLI from around Ireland and the UK. The series is on BBC Two on Tuesdays and also available on BBC iPlayer following broadcast.

Tomorrow’s episode sees the lifeboat respond to a paddle boarder in difficulty 150m from shore at Blackrock in Co Dublin. Weather conditions were quite rough at the time with a squall causing strong offshore wind gusts and an outward tide. The crew found the casualty exhausted and showing signs of hypothermia due to a long period in the sea.

Crew member Alan Keville, said: “Without the generous support from the public, we wouldn’t be able to save lives at sea and it’s great to be able to share what we do with our supporters from the comfort of their own home.”

During 2020, lifeboats in Ireland launched 945 times, coming to the aid of 1,147 people, 13 of whom were lives saved.

If you have an angling story to share, please send to me at angling@irishtimes.com.

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