Well it is comforting that is these days of climate change some of the folklore of times past still hold true. There was powerful magic back then and the Brindled Cow suffered mightily indeed. The Skinning Days were much in evidence at the start of April, with sleet, snow and hail stinging the ears of anglers in all across Ireland this week…

Most of our reports are salmon related this week – to the west and on March 30th Carrowmore’s first salmon of the season was boated by Brian Hope of Westport; the 7lb fish, which was quickly released, took a Green Peter variant as did the other two fish that were hooked and lost on the day.

Also giving up her first salmon of 2019 was the River Boyne in the east; a fine fish of 16lb fell to Pat O’Toole’s Park Shrimp on March 29th at Blackcastle. A number of other really good springers have been landed since then including a fish of 20lb from one of the Boyne tributaries. Needless to say, all Boyne and Kells Blackwater fish were returned to continue their journey upstream. #CPRsavesfish

Pat O’Toole with the Boyne’s first springer of 2019 – a fine 16lb fish which wins our catch of the week #CPRsavesfish

Back to the west and Delphi fishery reported a total of 21 salmon for the month of March and 34 for 2019 in total. Not as many as last year but well up on the 5 year average there. Further south and the Munster Blackwater is fishing well with both the Ballyduff Bridge fishery and the Blackwater fishery producing fish.

Remaining in the south, trout fishing on the River Bride is still good, with best catches seeming to fall to those anglers using nymphs. Trout anglers are reminded that salmon parr and smolts can hit flies hard at this time of year. If you find yourself landing smolts please be sure to pinch down your barbs so you can release them without handling, or better yet move on to new water and let the silver arrows race to sea unhindered.

Newbridge District Pike Anglers had 37 pike to 10lb 02oz between them at the weekend. Meanwhile up in Cavan, O’Casey’s Angling Club were also out and again mostly smaller fish were caught and released. It was clear to the anglers on the ground that spawning is underway and the bigger fish have their minds on other things…

Not much news on the coarse scene this week – CM Lakelands reports that 29 pairs fished the All Ireland Feeder Pairs match on Lough Muckno on Sunday last. Fishing was hard in places but everyone caught fish. The winning team was Darren Fairhurst and Brendan O’Brien.

Menapia Sea Anglers held their latest competition at Ballyhack over the weekend. In conditions that weren’t ideal all competing anglers managed to catch something and the winning anglers had good fishing. Killybegs Mariners were out again, this time fishing at Inver and some great flounder to 45cm were caught and released. In charter boat news, 3 boats were out over the weekend on Galway Bay and all report enjoyable fishing with a good range of species landed.

Ballycotton Big Fish event organisers advise that applicants from far and wide are coming in for this September’s huge catch and release sharking fishing competition in Co. Cork. Each day the angler who lands the biggest fish will win €20,000 and the angler who lands the biggest shark in the competition will win a huge €170,000. Closing date for applications to fish Europe’s richest shark fishing tournament is 15th April so be sure to get your name down sooner rather than later.

The Irish Bass Festival organisers have announced the dates for this year’s event and there is a bit of a change in the timing and format; First of all the dates have changed to later in the season and it will now run from 27-29th September more information at Irish Bass Festival moves to September for 2019

National Salmon Scale Project

Anglers who are willing to become Citizen Scientists are needed for a new National Salmon Scale Project which will help researchers understand the challenges which salmon are facing today. The National Salmon Scale Project aims to collect vital information through fish scales taken from salmon and sea trout which are harvested and caught and released in Irish rivers and lakes. Scales are a fascinating record of a fish life – one scale can reveal their age, where they have travelled in the vast Atlantic Ocean and the experiences they had along the way.

Why not mark International Year of the Salmon 2019 by playing your part in contributing to our knowledge about Ireland’s most iconic fish species? With the right information, we can help salmon navigate the environmental changes and human impacts which are contributing to their decline. Find out more about the National Salmon Scale Project

And now the weather…

OUTLOOK: An easterly airflow will persist. Drier and less cold over the weekend, but scattered outbreaks of rain will develop into the early next week.

FRIDAY NIGHT: Scattered outbreaks of rain, heaviest across the east and southeast. Rather cold, with lows of 2 to 6 degrees Celsius. Winds will be mostly moderate easterly, but fresher at times along eastern coasts.

SATURDAY: A dry and bright day for many across the country with sunny spells. Any lingering overnight rain will soon clear; however, the southwest of Munster will see a few showers. Maxima of 10 to 13 degrees Celsius, with the highest values in the west. Cold overnight with clear spells and some frost. Mist and fog patches too. Lows of 0 to 4 degrees Celsius.

SUNDAY: Another mostly dry and bright day with sunny spells, but cloudier with the risk of showers near eastern and southern coasts. Maxima of 10 to 13 degrees Celsius, with the highest values once again in the west. Generally dry on Sunday night with occasional mist and fog, but patchy rain and drizzle will affect some eastern and southern coastal counties. Lows of 3 to 6 degrees Celsius.

EARLY NEXT WEEK: Scattered outbreaks of showery rain, the focus of this across eastern counties given the easterly airflow. Long dry spells too though with variable cloud amounts and sunny spells. Highs of 10 to 13 degrees Celsius, best values away from eastern counties where it will feel cooler.

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

Paul O’Reilly
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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