As we experienced some torrential downpours this week, anglers rejoiced that their favourite rivers got some much needed water. It wasn’t just the Irish soccer team that rattled the nets; anglers too had their own victories. And it was a case of olé, olé, olé as some excellent specimens were landed…

East coast anglers have been enjoying some great specimen fishing with smoothhounds one of the main targets. Both boat and shore anglers are getting in on the action. Wicklow Boat Charters had specimen smoothies on 5 consecutive trips with fish to 16lb landed. Fishing can be hectic with as many as 12 fish over the specimen size in a day possible. Shore anglers have been getting their fair share too. One angler, Dean Quigley had a bit more than his fair share. Not content with a specimen he potentially smashed the record. Fishing a night session over the weekend, Dean had a smoothhound of 24.85lb which would obliterate the current record of 8.62kg only set around this time last year.

Dean Quigley could rewrite the record books with this incredible 24.85lb smoothhound

Bass fishing is picking up in Cork Harbour where up to 9 fish have been landed in evening sessions. Tralee Bay Sea Angling Club held the South West Species Hunt last weekend as a fundraiser for the Home nations teams 2016 and first place was secured by an very impressive 28 species. Blue Shark Angling in  Galway reported some great fishing  this week with plenty of tope and spurdogs in abundance. Anglers from Killybegs Mariners continue to get great sport from boat and shore. 3 rods had 30 rays as well as flatties and other species on just one trip afloat. Michael McVeigh in Downings reports that skate to 185lb, hordes of spurdogs, and good wreck fishing for whiting, spurs, haddock, and ling with plenty of rays over the sand are making up for the absence of tope, though other boats in the area have had some good fishing for them.

Fishing on the Lee picked up again and 42 salmon were reported. Its neighbour, the Munster Blackwater, tallied up some lovely grilse and a beautiful salmon weighing 12lbs for a visiting English angler all on the fly. The Bandon could do with some more rain but 5 salmon were caught in the club waters; 3 were tempted by the shrimp, 1 succumbed to a worm and another fell to a spinner. The Ilen had 8 fish on the worm.

Currane had a bad week with only a few small grilse being caught. The Laune didn’t fare much better and only one cute Tralee angler succeeded with 4 grilse.  Unfortunately he didn’t let the others in on his secret! Some heavy showers assisted the Owenmore in Kerry with grilse up to 7lb. amongst the sea trout catches.

The Galway Fishery was a paradise for anglers with perfect water levels and there was a great run of grilse. Costello Fishery could have done with more water but nonetheless grilse to 5lbs were caught.  Erriff saw a small rise and salmon and sea trout were clearly visible at the falls during the week trying to continue their journey upstream. At Delphi two fish were landed; a  7lbs on a Delphi Collie and an 8lb on a Red Frances.

Low water levels impacted on the Moy. A total of 35 fish were caught for the week ,  11 of those from the Ridge Pool.  Out at the estuary a Norwegian visitor had 6 sea trout with her first seven casts. Ballisodare fished very well with a total of 102 salmon caught.

There was a steady rise on the River Drowes but more is needed. 60 plus salmon were caught this week. Lough Melvin fished well too with 12 salmon caught trolling.

A super 11lb wild brown trout hit Niall Gelston’s bait as he fished for perch on Lough Corrib. His fish of a lifetime released after a quick photo. Anglers staying at the Corrib View Lodge scored 72 trout during the week with spectacular sport on caenis.

The skies over Lough Sheelin were lit up with lightening. There were some fierce heavy downpours and so much static in the air anglers had to take cover before they felt the tingle of electricity through their rods! 159 fish were recorded in the week, the heaviest being 6lb 12 ozs.  The majestic Boyne welcomed the rain during the week and anglers look forward to the sedge fishing.  A French film crew assisted by well-known international fly angler Campbell Baird visited the Boyne and Fane recently to showcase some of Ireland’s top wild brown trout fisheries.

Hot weather on the East Clare lakes earlier in the week made conditions difficult but several good tench to 5lb were caught. Great catches of tench and bream were also reported at the Edenderry angling festival, all on worm.  A 25.5 lb mirror carp nicknamed “Crop Circle” put in an appearance at Maynooth’s Meadow Lodge Fishery while further up the country Lough Aishling had its own colourful carp and hybrids.

Killinarden Angling Initiative continued their great work in the community. They fished at Laois Angling Centre and had good bags of carp and tench, plus a few trout.  Northern Ireland Cross Community angling had their achievements recognised by the Mayor of Belfast who presented them with an achievement award  in recognition of the hard work by the volunteers.

The Enfield 2 day festival took place with Pat Bartley the overall winner. Pupils from St Patrick’s Boys School Ballinamore got some great angling tips from coaches Mary Tigwell and Nick Richards of the Lakelands Angling Club at Kiltybarden.  Great to see the enthusiasm of the pupils. Another bunch of young anglers were out with the MADCAPS (Midlands Coarse & Pike Anglers).  Among their catch was a super 6lb tench.  The next MINI MADCAPS coaching session will take place on Saturday 18th June and new members are invited.

Fifty nine anglers took part in the annual Arvagh Seniors Challenge last week on Rockfield. Top weight was 59.130kg and the prize went to Tony Greene. Also in Cavan at Lough Ramor we saw bream to 6lb 8oz  and a hybrid of 4lb 6oz being caught by Dave Harlow from the UK and his buddy Tony.  While other UK guests at Melview Lodge had nice bags of bream, tench and hybrids.

Water levels on the Inny are pretty low but surface lures can make some exciting piking possible. Last Sunday Lough Lene Anglers hosted the Paddy Dolan Trophy for pike. On the day Mick Corrigan landed a pike of 4.52kg to take Top Rod. A group of French anglers fishing on Lough Erne had 60 pike for their week. The size of the fish was incredible with 15 fish of 90 cm+ and 11 fish over the meter. Most of the fish were caught casting over shallow, weeded bays.

The outlook for the weekend is as follows: Generally dry for most of tomorrow. Sunny spells will occur through the morning/early afternoon, but cloud will generally increase over the second half of the day with outbreaks of drizzle or light rain during the evening. Highest temperatures of 17 to 20C in light breezes. Rain will spread across the country during Sunday morning, continue through the afternoon, and then the rain becoming heavier towards evening. A clearance will finally occur on Sunday night. Highest temperatures for the day 16 to 18 degrees in fresh southwesterly winds. This cloudy, sunny, showery weather will continue into next week. Finally the real Irish summer is here!

Safe fishing to all and tight lines, especially here in Ireland.

Nancy Hearne

Catch, Photo, Release

If you have an angling story to share with the Irish Angling Update please send it to [email protected].


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Campbell Baird Takes a Trout to the Net (Trim Castle in the Background)
Campbell Baird Takes a Trout to the Net (Trim Castle in the Background)