It has been an eventful week for Irish anglers a week in which anglers were both busy on the water and making their voices heard. IFI would like to acknowledge the stance taken by those pike and other anglers who attended today’s peaceful protest at our headquarters and thank the organisers for delivering their petition.

Another 20lb Pike for Richie. This one wins him Catch of the Week
Another 20lb Pike from Allua for Richie. This one wins him Catch of the Week

The River Slaney opened on St. Patrick’s Day and Andrew Kelly was the lucky angler who caught the river’s first fish of the year. It appears there are a few fish up through the river and a number of other salmon were met and caught by the anglers. The Suir’s first salmon of the season was caught by Junior angler James Byrne. There have been 2 more salmon on the river since last Thursday. It looks like it was a slow enough week on the Munster Blackwater with hardly any news to report. It was also slow on the Bandon and there are no catches to report there either. Lough Currane was mostly quiet but a small few salmon were got in the last couple of days, all on the troll. On the Laune salmon are not too plentiful at the moment but some good sea trout to 4lb have been encountered. The River Feale was pretty low for the last week though a couple of salmon were landed on fly in the Listowel area. Bright blue skies and low water made things difficult for anglers at Delphi, though there was evidence more competent fishers in the Otter group coped better with the conditions! The Drowes also had blue skies, but better water and 5 fish were reported last week. Depending on water, prospects generally are good with  spring tides which always bring more salmon than neaps.

Emy Lough has been lower than usual recently but some good trout were caught on fly on St. Patricks Day and over the weekend. Lough Sheelin is still cold but 47 trout to 4lb were reported, all on fly. It is expected that hatches of Duckfly should start soon as the days continue to warm. Some good trout were also reported from Lough Lene and Ree. Hatches of early sedges on Lough Melvin saw good catches of both gillaroo and sonaghan in the shallows.

The Tramore Waterford SAC competition fished in Saleens over the weekend was said to be slow but some good flounder to 47cm made up for that. Sea anglers in Co. Cork report some enjoyable bass fishing from the shore and pollack from small boats. Good pollack to double figures were reported by charter fishing boats out of the Shannon Estuary and Galway Bay. Sea bass hunter Tomasz Ekert in Co. Kerry is enjoying some great success at his favourite marks and tell us that he is getting a lot of garfish already while chasing bass.

Pike angling picked up a bit in the Longford area and some lovely pike to 18lb were taken by one visiting angler. Amongst the fish caught by Gert and his guide was an unexpected trout of almost 12lb which is a new PB for Kevin Lyons. An extended trip to some Midlands venues by kayak angler Gary Robinson saw some decent fish landed on a variety of lures.  Last Friday on Lough Allua was described as marvellous by Greg Latour and Dutch angler, Richie wins Catch of the Week for his 20lb fish. Deadbaits are working best here.

Ken Ince and Julian Kendrick, Co. Offaly were both contenders for the top spot at the Inniscarra St. Patrick’s Festival and the two drew side by side on the Graveyard section on the final day. Ken’s final weight of 15.340kg just pipped Julian (Sensas Ireland) 14.890kg for a festival win.  A fantastic performance from Paul Leese saw him finish in first place at the St. Patrick’s Day Day Festival on Muckno with 8.080kg. The fishing is not always great at a coarse angling competition and on such days it is a chance to make new friends and that is what the anglers from Prosperous and the Madcaps did at Shannon Harbour at the weekend. Prosperous was were not just friendly, they also won on the day. Finally, congratulations to the Sensas Ireland who finished in 3rd place at the prestigious Sensas UK Challenge on the Gloucester Canal.

Club committee members and other interested anglers are reminded that the IFI Sponsorship Programme, which aims to provide support to angling groups, associations, clubs or other appropriate bodies to assist with the development and implementation of fisheries-related events, is currently open to applications until April 15th. More details are available at:

Well, “in like a lion and out like a lamb” nearly came true, but the settled, dry weather is not staying with us any longer. As we go to press there is a small craft warning on coasts from Carlingford Lough to Wicklow Head to Hook Head. Met Eireann forecast that Friday night will become wet and windy as rain moves eastwards over the country. The rain is expected to be heavy and persistent and may lead to spot flooding. The fresh southerly winds will ease by morning and temperatures will be between 4 and 6 degrees. Saturday will see further rain or showers with just a few brighter spells. Moderate southerly winds will veer southwest for a time and temperatures will be between 9 and 11 degrees at best. Sunday will be cold and breezy with scattered wintry showers. Monday will also be dry with scattered showers in a moderate to fresh westerly wind. The further outlook in to the early days of next week is for continued cold, unsettled weather with showers at times.

It just remains to say Happy Easter and may all your fish be free rising during this weekend of celebrations and commemorations.

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

Myles Kelly

Catch, Photo, Release

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Lough Sheelin…