While the past weeks saw relatively mild temperatures for the time of year it has definitely turned more wintry in recent days. With temperatures having dropped significantly and winds on the increase as well, angling conditions deteriorated notably. This is well reflected in the relatively small number of angling reports we received this week.

However, there was still some decent pike fishing to be had, with dead baits working well for anglers on Lough Erne, where they produced some quality pike.

Fine Lough Erne pike

Dead baits also did the trick for guests of Melview Lodge in Longford. John and James who were out with their host and guide Kevin managed to catch a good number of pike to just over the meter, along with plenty of fish in the 90cm mark which makes our catch of the week.

A happy Kevin Lyons of Melview Fishing Lodge!

Last weekend,  IFPAC ran their Interclub Competition where teams of four anglers representing different angling clubs around the country competed against each other for the trophy. The event was run on four lakes in the Co. Monaghan area with Dun na Ri Angling Club scooping first prize!

David Dennis with a 13lbs. 1oz. pike at the recent IFPCA Interclub Competition

As winter beckons, more and more charter skippers are taking their boats out of the water to overhaul and secure them for the winter. So it is no wonder that sea angling reports are getting more scarce as well. However, anglers onboard Fiona Tee fishing out of Killybegs in Co. Donegal still enjoyed some decent mixed fishing including a few good sized pollack.

Quality Donegal pollack

While boat fishing will become less common from now on, shore anglers will still find plenty of opportunities to pursue their sport, as did members of Killybegs Mariners sea angling club during the week when they had plenty of flounder together with some other species from the local surf beaches.

31cm flounder from the surf

David Norman of West Cork Bass reports that wrasse fishing can extend well into November and even December when the conditions allow. At times, wrasse attack lures intended for much bigger prey out of pure aggression and can give a really good account of themselves particularly on lighter gear or on the fly.

ballan wrasse
Wrasse will often take a lure out of aggression

Elsewhere, the Irish Federation of Sea Anglers held the Shore Master Angler competition last weekend. The prestigious Master Angler title is keenly contested, with the top anglers from clubs up and down the country vying for the title, and the chance to captain Ireland at a World Championships. This year, the event was based in Northern Ireland, with sessions fished at Benone and Whiterocks beaches. Northern club Glengormley & District SAC were definitely winners on the weekend, taking both main titles home. Well done Glengormley!

Glengormley & District SAC winners. Master Anglers Raymond McCann and Lisa Gormley with their trophies. Also receiving prizes were Tommy Carnegie and Linda Snoddy who both finished 5th, with Lisa making the Irish team that Lisa will captain.

Other news

Inland Fisheries Ireland has developed an important new tool that captures anglers’ knowledge and hands-on experience to help track changes in stocks of marine fish. The new method is called ‘FLEKSI’ (‘Fisher’s Local Ecological Knowledge Surveillance Indicators’) and crucially, it taps into the local ecological knowledge of Irish sea anglers as a way of complementing scientific knowledge. Over 650 recreational anglers who fish along the Irish Sea, Celtic Sea and West Coast of Ireland have contributed to the development of the tool, which was highlighted in the International Council for the Exploration of the Seas (ICES) Journal of Marine Science earlier this month. Further information on ‘FLEKSI’ is available here.

Finally, we would like to remind interested parties of two separate public consultations running at present. The first is regarding the Management of the Wild Salmon & Sea Trout Tagging Scheme (launched 20th October): https://www.fisheriesireland.ie/news/public-consultations/management-of-the-wild-salmon-sea-trout-tagging-scheme

The second is the Consultation on the Wild Salmon and Sea Trout Tagging Scheme Regulations 2021 and Conservation Measures for the 2022 Season (launched 10th November): https://www.gov.ie/en/consultation/3aee7-consultation-on-the-wild-salmon-and-sea-trout-tagging-scheme-regulations-2021-and-conservation-measures-for-the-2022-season/

And now the weather

Strong northwesterly winds will continue overland tonight with gales along northern coasts, and strong gales on the Irish Sea. Scattered wintry showers and long clear spells; mainly occurring across the north and northwest with snow over hills and mountains. Bitterly cold owing to an added wind chill factor with lowest temperatures of 0 to 2 degrees Celsius.

The east of the country will stay cold on Sunday, with higher temperatures returning to western parts.

The further outlook to the middle of next week is for fresh northwest winds moderating west to southwest with showers mainly on coasts and milder temperatures between 7 and 11 degrees generally.

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

Markus Müller
Catch, Photo, Release

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