Located on the western extremity of the continental shelf the island of Ireland has some of the most lightly fished rivers and lakes in Europe. The great limestone plain of Ireland covering the whole of the midlands is characterised by big river systems and thousands of lakes. Much of Ireland’s abundant coarse fish shoals live in these waters. Indeed there are over 8,000 miles of river, lake and canal bank for the coarse angler to explore and enjoy.
There is no close season for coarse fishing in Ireland. Fish feeding throughout the year, particularly roach and perch, can be fished all year round. Species such as tench, bream and rudd, which are most active in warmer weather, have a natural season extending from April to October.
The influence of the Irish climate, as well as the habits of the fish, has to be taken into account when targeting particular species.
Most Irish rivers and loughs are subject to seasonal rhythms of high and low water. Winter floods will put some rivers out of condition, and affect access to the loughs. The high winds of spring and autumn can render boat fishing on the bigger loughs unsafe for short periods. However, the coarse fisherman in Ireland will always find sheltered waters available when others are affected by floods or gales.