This October has been a mild one, with average temperatures well above the norm, and this has kept some fish more catchable than they might typically be at this time of year. The last few days have, of course, been wet and windy everywhere. Over the past week, rainfall amounts varied across the country, with the wettest conditions across the south and northwest (up to 162% of normal). Meanwhile, it was drier than usual elsewhere (between 37 and 106 % of normal rainfall). The driest weather was, of course, in Dublin, where rainfall only tallied to 6mm up to Wednesday evening. Temperatures are due to drop in the coming week, falling to low single digits overnight, so wrap up well if you are heading out for a cast or two.

As we would expect at this time of year, most of our reports came from the pike fishing community this week. Kevin Lyons of Melview Fishing Lodge has made up for lost time this year, with numerous groups of happy overseas anglers passing through his doors. Satisfied guests this week included Steve from the UK and French visitors Etienne and his pals.

Etienne off to a good start

Also thrilled to welcome back some overseas angling tourists was Bodo Funke of Angling Services Ireland; his guests Christian and Till spent three great days fishing in Roscommon. In the west, German guest Bernard caught a super pike while fishing with his grandchildren out of Lakeland Angling Centre on Lough Corrib. Irish pikers got in on the act too, Leinster Pike Anglers and Newbridge and District Anglers both holding successful competitions last weekend.

Christian with one of his nice pike

A couple of coarse festivals took place at either end of the country last week and over the weekend. The long-delayed FeederFest event, which was cancelled in 2020, took place on Inniscarra Reservoir in Cork; Tony Hopkins was head and shoulders above the other 59 competing anglers there. In Monaghan, a scaled-down Halloween Festival took place on Muckno, and Rory O’Neill came out top of the pile.

The Irish Federation of Sea Anglers had a busy bank holiday weekend. The senior boat anglers held their fish-offs in Cork to decide which five would compete at next year’s world championships in Portugal. Meanwhile, the IFSA Youths and Juniors put up with a sand blasting on Mullaghmore Strand in Sligo during their shore Interprovincials. Our Catch of the Week this week goes to the Youths, Juniors and their mentors who were battered by the elements but kept at it until their last casts were reeled in on Sunday evening.

Brian Reidy and the future of Irish sea angling

Things are winding down for the charter boats now, and this is the time of year for dry docking, engine repairs and much-needed paint jobs. However, Ewings Sea Angling and Boat Charters did manage to sneak out to one of their regular haunts in search of Halloween pollack. Skipper Daryl reckons that the unseasonal warmth has kept the fish active, and his anglers had some great fishing.

While the season for wild trout fishing has ended for 2021, there is still excellent trout fishing to be had on some of the stocked lakes, like Annagh Lake Rainbow Trout Fishery in Co. Cavan. The Annagh Lake Fishing Club has done some wonderful work to improve the facilities at the fishery in recent times. With the fishery remaining open until November 30th, they are welcoming visitors to swing by and try their luck.

Easy access via the jetty

In salmon news, the East Mayo Anglers are proud to announce that a club initiative has led to an increase in the number of salmon caught and released by club members and day ticket holders this season past. Nearly 43% of all fish caught by club members and visiting anglers – some 406 fish in total – were released to hopefully spawn this winter in the upper reaches of the catchment.

In other news…

further reminder to salmon and sea trout anglers that logbooks must be returned now that the season is over.

Inland Fisheries Ireland has launched a public consultation seeking anglers views on how to improve the Wild Salmon and Sea Trout Tagging Scheme.

Salmon Watch Ireland have announced details of their annual conference on November 6th, with the theme of the conference this year focusing on barriers to migration. This should be an interesting and informative session.

And now the weather

Scattered showers will continue Friday night, clearing to become chilly, temps falling to between 3°C and 7°C. Patches of mist and fog will develop too in a light southerly breeze.

Sunny spells and showers on Saturday, drier in the east, cool with highs of 10°C to 13°C in light to moderate south to southwest breezes. Wet and windy overnight, lows of 4°C to 8°C.

Rain continuing into the east and north on Sunday, with sunny spells and heavy showers elsewhere. Breezy with highs of 10°C to 13°C. Rain will linger overnight in the west and south, with a good deal of dry and clear weather across the centre of the country. It will be colder as temps are expected to fall to between 1°C and 4°C. The outlook is for cooler conditions with sunny spells and showers into midweek.

If you’re heading to sea, don’t forget to check the tides.

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

Paul O’Reilly
Catch, Photo, Release

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