Angling Notes: ‘Whips and maggots’ event lures out the young

Fishing for beginners in Cavan; return of an invasive species; Corrib and Mask deliver

Young anglers assemble ahead of the Try Angling event organised by Cavan Sports Partnership on Town Lake, Killeshandra, Co Longford

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) education and outreach team, in conjunction with Cavan Sports Partnership, held two Try Fishing events on Friday, August 14th, at Town Lake in Killeshandra, Co Cavan. The events were undertaken to give participants an opportunity to try out fishing in a safe environment.

A total of 14 young people took part on the day and despite the warm weather all got to try the “whips and maggots” (some for the first time) which brought great success in catching a variety of fish including roach, hybrids and perch.

Great fun was had by all and plans for a four-week Go Fishing programme with Cavan Sports Partnership is under way.

Kian Ferguson (12) proudly displays his certificate following the Try Fishing event

Lorraine O’Donnell, IFI’S education and outreach officer, said: “These events allow young people to experience the joys of angling, which are often on their doorsteps. We are working with various angling organisations to develop programmes across all disciplines to make angling more attainable for everyone to enjoy.


Aisling Maguire from Cavan Sports Partnership, added: “Our aim is to increase sport and physical activity opportunities for people in Cavan regardless of age, ability and background.With the make-up of Cavan and the number of lakes which abound, fishing is a fantastic activity and very accessible to all. Thanks to IFI and the local Belturbet angling club who assisted on the day.”

Concern over chub reappearance

The reappearance of the invasive species chub on the river Inny in Co Longford

The reappearance of the invasive species chub (Squalius cephalus) on the river Inny in Longford is of real concern to the biodiversity of Ireland’s biggest catchment, according to Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

When introduced, chub have the potential to compete with native fish for food and space and are potentially a carrier of fish diseases and parasites. The extent of the invasion is under investigation including strategies for eradication and control.

The fish were captured on rod and line at a targeted location identified by fisheries staff who recorded sightings at several locations. The inspection followed reports submitted to IFI and the National Biodiversity Data Centre by members of the public.

Chub are non-native in Ireland, and the Inny is the only river in which they have been recorded. The species was subject to removal between 2006 and 2010 and it was hoped that the species had been eradicated.

It is unclear at this stage whether these fish represent growth in the original population or are a result of a second introduction. Efforts are under way to establish their status and distribution which will help inform potential management programmes.

Dr Gallagher, head of research, said: “Ireland’s rivers are ecologically important ecosystems, which support recreational fisheries for native and established species. Non-native fish threaten these ecosystems in unforeseen ways, and are thus a cause for concern. [We would] would appeal to anglers to protect our fisheries by not moving fish between watercourses and submit any sightings to the IFI hotline: 1850 34 74 24.”

Fortune favoured the brave on the Corrib

On Corrib, angling was best described as a mixed bag with high winds and downpours but when conditions allowed good angling was had by those who ventured out.

In the Cornamona area, Cork anglers Billy Kavanagh and Kevin Willis landed two good trout in the Dooras area at the weekend and next day in the Annaghkeen area, a further three, all on wets.

First time at the dapping paid off handsomely for young James Rochford in the Cong area with a fine trout of four pounds, guided by Frank Costello of Ashford Bay Boat Hire & Guiding.

Cong club member Paul Byrne from Dublin along with two friends landed a beautiful trout of 10lb while trolling roach, which was sportingly released.

In the Greenfields area, the Shane Fanning Memorial Cup took place on Sunday on a catch-photo-release basis with two categories: longest overall length and longest fish. Nineteen anglers caught 38 trout, all 13in upwards.

Results: 1, Darren Duffy, 5 fish (80in); 2, Paddy Fitzgerald, 4f (74in); 3, John McGuire, 3f (57in). Paddy Fitzgerald had the longest fish at 23in.

Mask provides a great day’s fishing

On Mask, I enjoyed a great day’s fishing recently with my friend Pat Gallagher. Fishing out from Dringeen Bay we first tried the “deeps” off the Kilbride shore and managed two nice fish, best 1.5lb, along with plenty of action.

Later we moved between Inisgleastai and Inishocht Bay and again, found success with a further two good fish. In total, we had six fish to the boat.

Helena Byrne, proprietor of Danagher’s Hotel in Cong, said salmon fishing on the nearby Cong river was excellent early on in the season but had petered off recently. However, trout anglers staying in the hotel are delighted with the fishing on Corrib, she added.

My stay in Danagher’s Hotel was first class and the food, as always, was really good. For bookings: telephone 094-954 6028.