For the first time in what seems like an age the water was in perfect condition in the last few days of July and the beginning of August and ideal for both fly and spinner.
I actually caught my first Salmon at the beginning of this month but felt obliged to return it as it was a bit on the small side.
There were three further Salmon caught the same weekend one of which was also returned.
Conditions deteriorated again and while the beat was busy one could only say that when fishable the water conditions were not ideal.
I was due to fish again myself on August 21st.and knew the water level had been dropping over the previous few days but when I arrived on the beat that particular morning it had risen again overnight by almost 8 inches and was yet again above the casting platform.

Brendan Peppard from Mount Mellery, with a 4lb Salmon caught on a black flying C, he returned another fish of same size that day being Friday 24th August
Brendan Peppard from Mount Mellery, with a 4lb Salmon caught on a black flying C, he returned another fish of same size that day being Friday 24th August

Being the eternal optimist I ventured out again last Fri. and was rewarded for my endeavors with a nice Salmon of 4lb. It was caught on spinner at the bottom of the beat close to the bridge. Water conditions were not great and the weather was appalling as can be seen from the wet weather gear I’m wearing.
As of today water levels are still unsettled with clarity being poor. The forecast is for more localised rain but is due to change for the better. Where have I heard that before?
Fish are showing despite the coloured water which is a good sign as we approach the final month of the season.
Cian Derybshire
Ballyduff Bridge Salmon Fishery

Nature notes

This time of the year is perfect for foraging with abundant supplies of Meadowsweet flowers, Sorrell.Wild Garlic bulbs, Watercress and Peppermint all of which are perfect for autumn salads.
Also to be had are Dog rose, more commonly known as Rosehips and a very rich source of vitamin C.
The Purple Loosestrife is beginning to flower and is a beautiful sight when in full bloom.
The weather has not been kind either to the Bees and Butterflies which have been most noticeable by their absence.
Normally there would be a great number of butterflies to be seen such as Small Tortiseshell,Small White,Peacock,Red Admiral and Meadow Brown.
Our otter family has produced two pups and they at least are having a good fishing year.
There are a number of Kestrels to be seen and are at present teaching their young a variety of diving techniques.
We also have a large colony of Goldfinches all of which are busy collecting Thistle seeds
At this time of year a number of wild plants come into bloom such as Crocosmia.
A South African Native, Crocosmia Lucifer is a member of the Iris family. A spectacle in the garden in August, its fiery red Flowers are unmistakable! The plant is aptly named ‘Lucifer’ because of these red flowers. The plant makes a stunning display and is very easy to grow.
This Crocosmia is a cultivated flower unlike the wild version.
This showy plant graces many country lanes from July to September with a wonderful display of spikes of bright reddish-orange flowers.  A familiar sight in the west of Ireland particularly, it is taken by many to be one of our native plants, along with Fuchsia.  However, like Fuchsia, this is an introduction to our shores and is a hybrid between two South African species.  Nevertheless it is a very attractive sight and seems to blend in to our landscape, particularly in places where it grows alongside our native Purple Loosetrife.  The flowers (25-55mm) are in a one-sided loose panicle and have a corolla which is tubed with six lobes.
Another wild plant to be seen is the Honeysuckle.
. Also known as Woodbine, this deciduous woody climber twines itself over other shrubs and hedgerows, giving out a most heavenly fragrance.  From June to October it has distinctive creamy flowers which become pale yellow after pollination, often reddish outside.  They are 3-5cm long, tubular, two-lipped and arranged in a whorl on stems which become silver-grey as the summer progresses. The leaves are grey-green and lanceolate.  In autumn the scarlet berries appear in the hedgerows in clusters Honeysuckle is pollinated by bees by day and at night the moths are attracted by the wonderful scent, the Elephant Hawk moth regularly visiting in search of nectar. This is a native plant belonging to the family Caprifoliaceae
We can only hope things improve for the last few weeks of the season..