Frank Reilly reports that there were good hatches of duck fly over the last week, with some very good catches. Seamus and Packie O'Loughlin from Ennis fished out of Greenfields for 2 days on the 26th and 27th, landing 18 trout (14 returned) up to 4lbs. Mick McCluskey and Maurice McDavitt of Northern Ireland fished for 5 days and landed 30 trout (27 returned) up to 3.25lbs. Peter McGuinness and Frank Reilly fished for 1 day and landed 8 trout (all released) up to 2lbs.
The Oughterard Development 50 two day team competition was held over the weekend, with 48 anglers landing 83 trout for 70.2kg. The winners were Darren Maguire from Co. Fermanagh and Pat Connell of Cork, with 7 trout for 9.3kgs. 2nd place went to Harold O'Toole and John Reidy with 8 trout for 7.2kgs, while in 3rd place were Michael and Eamon Molloy with 9 trout for 6.4kgs. Gerry McGuire of Omagh fished for 1 day in the Oughterard area and landed 5 trout for 1day. Larry Kelly, Dublin and John Jacks of Scotland also fished for one day and landed 4 trout, the best at 3lbs. Pat Gallagher, Meath had a very good day landing 7 trout up to 2.5lbs. Catch of the week goes to well know international angler and guide Larry McCarthy of www.corribangling.com with 26 trout (24 returned) for 53lbs. Larry reported his best day was Saturday 29th when he landed 7 trout for 19lbs.
Larry McCarthy duckfly trout March 2014_100mm
Angling guide Larry McCarthy from www.corribangling.com with a fine Corrib trout taken during the duckfly hatch, March 2014
After a long, wet and wild winter, Ronan Cusack's first report of the season makes for great reading.
After a long winter and extremely wet spring, Lough Mask has finally shed some of its flood water and begun to come alive for the 2014 season. Many local anglers around the lake have been slow to launch their boats and said that extreme water levels in Feb/Mar of this year have never been seen before.
Cushlough Floods Winter 2013-14_100mm
Photo shows the incredibly high water levels seen on Lough Mask earlier this year, with much of the carpark at Cushlough under water.
On Tuesday last the Burke family of Clonbur organised a two day competition in memory of well-known Mask angler Ignatius Burke. This event was well supported and fishing was in top form. A total of 76 anglers competed, weighing in 181 fish over the 2 days. Fermanagh angler Nigel Greene took first place with 6 trout for 8.31lbs. In second position was Mike O'Shea from Kerry, who also had 6 fish for 7.54lbs. In third place, with 6 trout for 7.12lbs, was Loughrea angler Malcolm Naughton. Heaviest fish over the 2 days went to Julian Beehal from Dublin, with a fine trout weighing 4.65lbs.
The welcome rise in temperatures this week has reflected in an abundance of fly life. Huge hatches of both dark and cinnamon sedge have been reported around the lake and fish have been seen freely rising, yet the more seasonal duckfly have not been as plentiful. Ballinrobe Anglers chairman Kevin Beattie had 5 nice trout fishing dries on Sunday last (best fish 1.5lbs, all returned). Kevin also fished on Thursday with local angler Ray Broughton and they had 6 fish pulling wets in shallow water (best fish 1.5lbs). Sean Maloney, Ballinrobe and Partry angler Oliver Wickham had 4 fish on Sunday, again fishing wets in very shallow bays (best fish 2lbs). Tommy Foley and Tim Hannon had a day on Mask last Wednesday and they finished with 9 fish over the size limit, and several under size (best fish 1.5lbs, all returned). Kevin Egan, Partry fished for a few hours on Saturday and he had 5 fish pulling wets (best fish 1.5lbs, all returned).
Despite a slow start Mask is fishing really well at the moment and with the mild weather forecast for the coming week it looks as if this is set to continue.
Ronan also guides on Mask and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 087 2869487
The first salmon of the season was reported at Ballynahinch Castle Fishery this week. The fish, a lovely fresh-run springer, was landed on the 26th by regular angler Ann Corcoran, who was ably assisted by Ballynahinch head guide, Cyril Biggins. Good water conditions at the moment should hopefully see more fish reported here soon, and we look forward to a good season and many great reports from Ballynahinch. To book fishing or accommodation, contact the castle at 095 31006, or check www.ballynahinch-castle.com
Ballynahinch First Salmon Ann Corcoran 26 Mar 2014_100mm
The first salmon of the season from Ballynahinch Castle Fishery, a fine springer landed by Ann Corcoran and assisted by head guide Cyril Biggins.
Costello and Fermoyle
Fishery manager Terry Gallagher was in touch to report the first salmon of the season at Costello. The fish, an 8lbs bar of silver, was landed at the Cabbage Pool on River Beat 1 by Geoffrey Fitzjohn, who was fishing his trademark Black Shrimp (Size 8) on the 26th.
Terry reports that staff at Costello are hoping for a continuation of last year's great season, with a salmon rod catch of 73 salmon, the best annual rod catch at Costello since 1996. The sea trout rod catch also recovered, with over 600 fish caught and released last year, despite relatively light angling effort. Hopefully this year will see a continuation of that trend, and a few more anglers on this beautiful fishery should see numbers increase again.
To book fishing at Costello, contact Terry at email@example.com or phone 087 2399988
High water levels still prevail in Galway, with fishing impossible due to the flood conditions. Once again it is difficult to understand why all the sluice gates remain open, impacting severely on anglers, when the lake upstream has dropped significantly and is almost back to normal level. It appears maintaining appearances of flood prevention is more important than regulating flows according to the actual prevailing conditions.
While angling is impossible at the Weir, anglers upstream have reported success. The first salmon was taken in Cong over the weekend, a fine 10lbs springer landed by local angler Barry Gibbons, who was spinning. I have reports of 3 or 4 more fish taken in Cong since then. Reports have also come in of several good springers taken on the Clare River, mostly by worm anglers.