‘A little more persistence, a little more effort and what seemed hopeless failure, may turn to glorious success’
Making the assumption that most of us believe in a god (90% according to the 2016 census) a recent radio programme caught my attention where a Dr Rob Marshall suggested that we should all perhaps revert back to the old Testament which teaches us that the earth and the water belongs to God and not to us. By anglers adopting this belief this would be of huge benefit to Lough Sheelin in that firstly we would be reminded that nobody owns this lake but that each of us have a responsibility to look after it (to pass on to future generations) and secondly that the weather which has a huge influence on the fishing here, well it’s out of our hands, it is controlled by an outside influence. This might be of some comfort to those who flogged their guts out on this lake for days with little or no success.
The weather again wasn’t kind to the anglers this week, with little reprieve from a cold intermingled by west to north westerly winds with evening flat calms creating far from ideal conditions. Despite the elements this week did see a change here. On Wednesday afternoon there was a rise in temperature when the previous cold lost its harshness and seemed to be edged with warmth, this change was instantly reflected on the lake which saw huge buzzer hatches and fish starting to move to them. If the temperature was in the double figures, the buzzer hatches were good, if the temperature dropped to the singles, the hatches disappeared and with them the rise of fish.
There were great hatches of olives reported but the trout weren’t interested so for this week it was all about buzzer fishing.
The lure anglers fell considerably from their previous top placing with the fly anglers claiming the highest catches on Sheelin over the past seven days and this was all thanks to this small chironomid. For a trout fly fisherman understanding the life cycle of the buzzer makes for a better fly team choose. The hatches can be seen by either looking for the adult fly or by finding the spent pupa bodies or shucks in the surface film.
It’s important to know what trout rises indicate what stage of the buzzer life cycle that the fish are feeding on. Once the buzzer pupa reaches the surface it tends to get stuck under the surface film and takes a while to push through it. While they are doing this they hang in the film like little commas and the trout cruise along at a leisurely pace sipping the buzzers at or just under the surface. This classic rise form shows no fish at all for most of the time, just a subtle ringlet, a single trout footprint. Other times it’s a head and tail rise as the fish porpoises slowly to take a surface- film chironomid. If trout are on the olives they come after them in a whoosh but there was no whooshing for this week at least.
Total number of trout recorded at this office last week was 38. The heaviest fish of the week was a trout of 6lbs 2ozs caught by Northern Ireland angler Niall McMenamin using a dry Buzzer.
The best fishing areas on the lake were again weather dependent. Sheltered areas, behind coves and island and down along the Western shore were good. Buzzer fishing was best from Sailors Garden down into Corru Bay but again this was depended on wind direction. The pick of the fishing days was Wednesday where along with an increase in heat there was a small drizzle of rain and it was that dampness that seemed to set the midges into overdrive. Times of the day varied but mornings appeared to have the edge on the afternoons and evenings.
Selection of Catches
- David Reilly, Tullyallen – 1 trout at 6lbs using a small Sooty Olive.
- Junjis Bindus, Balbriggan – 2 trout averaging 2 – 2 ½ lbs.
- Anthony Rochford fishing with angling friend Larry O’Sullivan – 1 trout at 2 ½ lbs fishing a drift from the Long Rock on wets.
- Portadown anglers – 4 trout heaviest at 4lbs fishing wets in Bog Bay.
- Mick Kelly, Dublin – 4 trout heaviest at 3lbs using Buzzer patterns at Watty’s Rock.
- Davey Kidd – 3 trout on Wednesday April 19th at 3, 3.5 and 4lbs on wets.
- Mathew Brady, Cavan – 1 trout at 5lbs on a Dunkeld.
- Martin McCoy, Northern Ireland – 1 trout at 2 ½ lbs on wets.
- Navan angler – 1 at 5lbs
- Christopher Defillon – 1 trout at 61 cm on lures
- Paul McMenamin, Northern Ireland – 2 trout at 1 ¾ lbs each on wets.
- Damien Willis, Cavan – 3 trout on April 21st on Buzzers, heaviest at 3lbs.
There are hundreds of variations of trout buzzers including epoxy buzzers, flashbacks, quills, Pheasant Tail Nymph, Shipman’s Buzzers, emergers, balling etc.
At this stage of the season, I was reliably informed, that you should fish on ‘the track of the water’ in other words that stretch of water that is sheltered somewhat, rippled, where the edges of this aquatic runway are rougher than the calmer medium.
Another tip passed on was to perhaps stick to one fly as two might create too much of a disturbance for the timid surface feeders.
The most successful flies were the teams of wets, predominantly Buzzer imitations on di 3, intermediate and in some cases floating lines with a sink tip. A size 14 dry Buzzer pattern proved successful for some whereas the 1867 Dunkeld attractor pattern proved that it’s important to stick to the old tried and tested patterns by catching a 5 pounder for its user. Other good flies were the Silver Dabbler, the Fiery Brown Dabbler, the Claret Dabbler, the Claret Bumble, Bibios, the Silver Invicta, the Connemara Black, Black Pennell, the Cock Robin and the Sooty Olive.
All anglers are required to have a Fishery Permit to fish Lough Sheelin which must be purchased before going out on the lake.
A Catch and Release policy is strongly encouraged at all times.
Please remember anglers to abide by BYE-LAW 790 which strictly prohibits
- All trolling on the lake from March 1st to April 30th (inclusive).
- From May 1st to June 15th – no trolling between 7pm –6am and no trolling under engine between 6am – 7pm and
- June 16th – October 12th – no trolling under engine between 7pm – 6am.
- No trout less than 14 inches should be taken from the lake
Join the Club…
For anyone interested in joining Lough Sheelin’s Angling Club – The Lough Sheelin Trout Protection Association please contact Thomas Lynch @ 087 9132033.
Guides and ghillies…
Grey Duster Guiding
Tel: 086 8984172 Email: [email protected]
Lough Sheelin Guiding Services
Tel: 087 1245927 Web: www.loughsheelinguidingservices.com
[email protected] 086 2490076
D.C Angling & Guiding Services
contact David @ 087 3946989
Tel: 087 4194156 or +353 43 6681298
Email: [email protected]
Guide Fishing Ireland www.guidefishingireland.com
Water rarely gives second chances and a life jacket is just that – it saves your life.
Life jackets are required by law – SI No 921 of 2005 – Pleasure Craft (Personal Flotation Devices and Operation) (Safety) Regulations 2005.
We would implore anglers and all other users to wear life jackets for their own safety as well as it being the law.
Please put on and keep on that life jacket until you are back on dry land.