Happy New Year everyone. Ireland has had a wet a windy start to 2014 but it has generally been mild and not too miserable on the opening days of the season so far.  Temperatures while cold at times have been good but plenty of rain over the Festive period has left many rivers and loughs very flooded and it has taken some time for the first salmon to be banked.

Eoin Mc Manus with the first salmon of 2014.

Stormy conditions and high water levels greeted anglers trying to land the first salmon of the year last week on the River Drowes.  On the 7th of January, local angler Eoin McManus landed the first salmon of 8 lb. on a Rapala lure near Lennox’s bridge and the fish was photographed and sold for charity. The bright silver fish wins our Catch of the Week to kick off the new season.  Water levels while still high on the river are starting to drop now so more salmon should be caught in the next few days.

There was a fair bit of Pike fishing in the past two weeks and Roly Byrne certainly got into a few nice fish on the River Barrow.  Up on the upper Boyne loughs, Dougie Robinson landed a great pike and Catch of the Week contender of 25 lb. 6 oz. on a deadbait.  An Ireland vs Poland Pike Match will take place on Saturday 25th January in the Ballybay area. Angling guide in the midlands, Michael Flanagan reports on some nice canal pike action as the bigger loughs in the area were stormy and flooded.  Many anglers we hear got plenty of fishing gear from Santa so I hope to see many more anglers out fishing soon.

On the Coarse angling front, there was a nice report of the 14 lb. 8 oz. common carp and several other good carp for anglers fishing “the Lough” in the middle of Cork City.  The World Feeder Fishing Championship will be held on the Lee reservoirs at Coachford on July 19th and 20th 2014.

There was a fair bit of sea angling activity to report and well known sea angler, Stephen Brennan enjoyed a shore outing to south Wexford landing bass and a fine Specimen Flounder.  This weekend sees the Interprovincial Shore competitions commence this Friday the 10th of January in Ulster.  The 3rd Irish Bass Festival will be held on July 25th, 26th and 27th 2014.  Despite the stormy weather, there was some Codling landed on a shore competition on Ballyquinn near Brandon in Co. Kerry.  In Cork Harbour, there was a big range of species reported from boats fishing within the harbour area in the past week.

There were several reports in the past fortnight from the Ardaire Springs Fishery in Kilkenny where angling guide Jason O’Riordan and his son Luke and others enjoyed some terrific Rainbow Trout fishing.

The middle of the week has seen the weather improve and there should be some good fishing in this weekend both in freshwater and at sea.

The forecast is for a cold, crisp day tomorrow but rain will become widespread in Western and Southern areas on Sunday morning, locally heavy. This rain will spread to the rest of the country in the afternoon and early evening. Cold broken weather is coming next week with wintry conditions expected.

Tight lines especially in Ireland,

Paul Bourke
Angling Information Officer

Catch, Photo, Release

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Salmon fishing reports

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Corner of the Blackwater on the River Drowes