NEWSREEL: AUTUMN 2017

The River Torridge Fishery Association

President: Lord Clinton

Chairman: Paul Ashworth

Secretary: Charles Inniss e-mail: charles.inniss@btinternet.com

The Fishing Season:

It has been a most encouraging year for salmon, with the middle river beats doing particularly well. Despite the fact that in the spring and early summer the river was quite low salmon seemed eager to move upstream and by mid-May salmon were being caught as far upstream as Okement Foot. From July onwards the weather was much more unsettled and on occasions the river was out of order for several days. The lack of grilse in the last two months of the season was disappointing. Several fish approaching 20Ib have been caught and the final salmon rod catch will probably be 90/100: the best since 2012. The large sea trout were certainly in short supply, but a double figure fish was caught at Beam towards the end of June. However an encouraging aspect was that many of the school peal were in the 1.5/21b range. Sea trout catches were similar to recent years. The few anglers who did venture out after dark often enjoyed some exciting sport. The brown trout fishing seems to have been patchy but as in recent years there have been numerous reports of fish in excess of 2Ib being caught. The perennial complaint is the lack of fly life which results in disappointing surface activity.

The EA Consultation on measures to reduce exploitation by both rods and nets.

The committee would like to thank all the members who went to the trouble of completing the consultation questionnaire. It was certainly far too long-winded. Let’s hope the EA sees sense and any proposed measures to reduce rod exploitation are purely voluntary. I will keep you all informed of developments. Obviously the EA will contact those of you who completed the questionnaire.

The Devon and Severn IFCA (Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authority) Byelaw Review:

With the government lurching from one crisis to another a decision regarding banning drift netting for bass and mullet in our estuary seems to have been placed on the back burner. Apparently it has reached the last stage: all that is needed is for the Minister to rubber stamp.

The salmon hatchery:

Over the weekend 11/13th November the Okement came into spate after prolonged heavy rain, so we decided to try and catch up some broodstock. There were plenty of fish showing at the base of the weir at Monkokehampton and unbelievably at the first attempt we caught up the 5 hens and 5 cocks we needed. All were in excellent condition and hopefully some if not all of the hens will be ready for stripping in the very near future. There is a long way to go but so far so good.

The Annual Dinner and Raffle:

Another superb evening at The Half Moon. Over 50 of us enjoyed an excellent meal followed by the raffle and auction. Once again member support for the annual raffle was tremendous and over £1,500 was raised which will go towards continuing our efforts to improve the fishing on this beautiful river. Particular thanks to Paul Ashworth, our Chairman, and his wife Geraldine who organised the raffle and the auction. There was the usual huge array of prizes.

Winter well:

Only three months to go until the start of another season. Have a great Xmas and above all a healthy New Year.