Finally, the extremely hot and sunny weather came to an end as most parts of the country saw longer spells of rain and cooler temperatures for much of the past week. Particularly salmon anglers felt relieved when the long dry spell was broken by several floods contributing more oxygenated water and making water levels rise. The fresh water and lower temperatures mainly improved salmon fishing in the spate rivers but other rivers such as the Moy also saw an increase in catch numbers. Anglers enjoyed good fishing on the Galway Weir where grilse have been running the river in better numbers every day since the fishery was closed due to high temperatures.

Fishing the Galway Weir, June 21 2023

The long-awaited rain also brought good sport to the Erriff and other spate systems in the west. There were encouraging reports from Kerry, where the rains that fell last week improved the fishing on the Laune, Maine, Roughty and Lough Leane, while anglers on Lough Currane had a handful of salmon and sea trout as well. There was similarly good salmon fishing reported from the West Cork rivers and the River Lee. Also the Bandon got a good run of grilse, and as a consequence, salmon anglers had some productive days, particularly in the lower part of the river. On the Munster Blackwater, it was also the lower reaches that saw the best of the fishing during the past week.

A summer flood at Aasleagh Falls, River Erriff, Co.Mayo

Over to coarse fishing, where a number of matches were fished during the past week. The Leinster Coarse Fishing Federation fished the last leg of their 2022/23 Leinster league on the Royal Canal. After thunder and lightning had passed, some great fishing for roach, rudd, perch, bream, tench and pike was had.

Coarse angler on the Royal Canal

The weather also impacted on the last match of Athy & District Anglers’ summer league. Strong and gusty winds forced most anglers to stay close to the bank with their poles, but nevertheless, some exceptional fish were caught in some pegs. On Muckno, a fine bag of 18kg for Rimantas Kondracas won first prize of round two of this year’s Feedermaster competition, while down south, Leo Lynch landed a massive 135kg in the latest round of Oakland’s Summer League.

Nice bag from Muckno

The windy conditions last week impacted on charter boat fishing, resulting in fewer sea angling reports than in previous weeks. However, Luke Aston skipper of the Clare Dragoon benefited from having the more sheltered Shannon Estuary right on his doorstep. His clients enjoyed some excellent fishing for thornback ray, bull huss, the ubiquitous doggies and also had a couple of lively tope.

Fine tope from the Shannon Estuary

We also received a great report from Shane Nugent who had some super smoothhound fishing at a Wexford venue including a number of PBs. Smoothhounds were also the order of the day for the Killybegs Mariners crew up in Donegal together with some good lure action from local rock marks. Switching to lures also payed off for Craig Murphy when fishing Tralee Bay. After trying for ray in the morning, himslef and his friend changed to lures, and after a few schoolie bass, Craig was rewarded with his fish of a lifetime. Craig’s specimen size bass of 76cm (10lb 6oz) deserves to win our Catch of the Week!

Craig Murphy with his 76cm sea bass before release

Our “Junior Catch of the Week”, however, goes to 6-year old Ziggy Hatton who showed his flyfishing skills while guided by fly expert Richie Ryan in Cork Harbour.

A very happy 6-year old Ziggy with his fly-caught pollack

Lure anglers might like to tune into episode 13 of Cormac Walsh’s “Lure Fishing Podcast”. This week, Cormac chats with top striped bass angler Brandon Sausele from Long Island, New York.

Another podcast of note is Daire Whelan’s and Tom Doc’s “Ireland on the Fly”. We would like to recommend two episodes this week. For a start, there is a special book club episode this week as Tom & Daire speak to Kirk Wallace Johnson, author of the acclaimed best seller “The Feather Thief”. However, Ireland on the Fly also talks water quality and what it means for angling…

In other news, Inland Fisheries Ireland has launched an open call for youth clubs, community groups, and schools in the greater Dublin area to take part in its fishing programme – the Dublin Angling Initiative. The project aims to promote, develop and improve angling among children and young people. In 2023 Inland Fisheries Ireland is once again looking for interested parties for the summer, autumn and winter months to learn how to fish.

Finally, we would like to congratulate Sixth class learners in Scoil Mhuire agus Iosaf, Collooney, Co. Sligo who landed top prize in IFI’s Something Fishy competition.

four people standing behind an art project on a table
(L-R) Elisha Hickey (class teacher), Markus Müller (IFI), Emily Mannion (class representative), Paul Colreavy (principal)

Something Fishy is an educational programme aimed at primary school pupils aged between 10-13 years old. It informs and educates students on fish, water, angling, and the Irish environment. On completion of the programme, primary school students were challenged by IFI to create a project to demonstrate their learnings based on the theme of ‘life along the river’.

And now the weather…

Saturday will be fresh and blustery with sunny spells and scattered showers, mainly over the northern half of the country. Highest temperatures of 15 degrees in the northwest to 20 degrees in the southeast in fresh and gusty westerly winds. The outlook for most of next week is for more unsettled weather with rain or showers at times. However, it looks like becoming a little warmer with temperatures in the high teens to low twenties.

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

IFI Staff
Catch, Photo, Release

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