Declan Cooke reports from the Moy…
The angling season on the River Moy is difficult to compare with previous seasons in that it didn’t really commence until mid-June and angler effort throughout the season was considerably less than usual. Almost all overseas anglers cancelled their trips to Mayo and even Irish and NI anglers didn’t show up in the usual numbers until well into July. Despite the very obvious drop in angler numbers around the Moy, 2020 proved to be quite a productive season.
Once angling commenced in June, catches were excellent, indicating a strong and early run of quality grilse into the Moy. There were also good catches of multi-sea-winter fish in the initial angling period which augmented the quality of fishing on offer and enticed many locally based anglers to fish.
Later in the Summer, word of the great salmon angling, particularly in the middle reaches of the Moy, had spread and more anglers began to appear from the East and south of Ireland. Catches remained excellent right up until mid-August and Mount Falcon and the Ballina Club had their best season for 10 years. The “dog days” lull in salmon angling came towards the end of August and, although numerous fish were still showing between Ballina and Ballylahan, few could be tempted to take. The final week of the season saw a return to form for angling and nearly 500 were accounted for in the final 10 days of the season. Happily, well over half of these were released.
The final tally for the Moy in 2020 was 5,819 salmon, not bad for a year when we were locked down for the first half of the game.