First let me apologise for the late posting of this report but believe me we have been busy around the loch trying to keep it fishing well despite the unusually hot conditions. In the last report we mentioned that we were on standby for switching the aerator on and for weed cutting if it became necessary ……. needless to say we have been busy doing both.
Almost as soon as the last report was posted we took the decision to switch on the aerator. As you know we had been monitoring the water temperature and again as many of you will know the optimum growth temperature for a trout is 18 degrees C. Extremes of temperature can cause problems for a fishery. Temperatures of 4 degrees C or lower result in the trout not feeding and hence not growing. On the other hand temperatures of 22 degrees C or above result in poor levels of dissolved oxygen being present in the water which again affects the feeding habits of the trout. Above 24 degrees C trout will start to die due to heat stress. By using the aerator we have been able to avoid many of the problems that lots of smaller waters have been suffering during this unusually hot period and we are glad to say that the number of dead trout that we have seen has been very small and have almost certainly died as a result of being caught and returned poorly. With all of this in mind it is perhaps pertinent to remind anglers that in these hot conditions it is vitally important to manage catching properly in order to minimise the distress caused to fish.
Please take extra care over the warm months with fish that you intend to release. They are much more vulnerable to damage or skin infection when water temperatures are high.
- Play them hard and get them in quickly.
- Avoid handling them which damages the protective mucus on their skin – release them in the water if possible.
- If you do have to handle them, wet your hands first – and don’t squeeze!
- Make sure that the fish swim away strongly.
A quick reminder that when the aerator is running we ask people not to fish within the ring of buoys surrounding the bubbles.
Alongside running the aerator we have also begun the annual task of weed cutting which we started earlier this week. So far we have managed to cut and remove approximately 30 tonnes of weed mainly from in front of the boat house but some from the top end of the loch as well. We will continue to cut until we are happy with the level of weed within the loch and will do our best to operate when the loch is quiet but apologise to those who might be fishing when we are working.
On the fishing front it has been extremely difficult to predict one day to the next how the loch will perform and what will work. Suffice to say though that even in very difficult conditions there are always those anglers that seem to be able to unlock the secrets of what’s working. To name a few though, Steve Robertson had a great day and managed to land 11 fish to the boat fishing mainly dry flies and on the same day Bob Cockburn had an equally impressive haul of 9 mainly on dries and Peter Hottinger 7 using hoppers. Ian McNicholl the day after returned at least 10 fishing using Diawl Bachs and a couple of days later John McGregor returned 5 from the bank using Wickham’s Fancy. Carl Ferguson had a great day with his dad, Bill and came back a few days later only to improve his performance with a fine evening session and 12 fish to the boat using Shipman’s buzzer. Keith and John Renton also had a great night with a total of 14 fish to the boat …… honours were not exactly even but it would be unprofessional of me to say who came out on top. The last I saw of them though Keith had a large smile on his face.
As always there have been a number of fine brownies caught and it is worth mentioning one of our young anglers Ewan Whitelaw who whilst out fishing with Bob Harrison landed his best ever brownie of around 2lbs in weight.
In Cub News:
- Fishing for Everyone FC held their annual ladies day at the loch. On a beautifully sunny day they had a superb BBQ before taking to the banks and boat. Unfortunately the catching did not match the weather but everyone reported having a lovely day at the loch with good food to boot!
- Heriots AC the following weekend had a much better day and on a bright and warm Saturday managed to land 38 fish for the 10 anglers giving an impressive 3.8 fish per rod. All reported having had a great day on the dry flies.
- Deed Firrit AC was the last club to visit during this period and fished the day after the Heriots. Less fish landed than the day before but a great day reported and looking forward to a return visit in the future.
In other news:
- A reminder of The Lads and Dads Competition which we are holding again this year. The date for the event is Sunday 29th September and pretty soon we will be announcing details of the day. Watch this space.
- Many thanks to Jocky Veitch who inadvertently got roped in to helping me with setting out the buoys for the aerator. He only came to deliver a quote and spent nearly 3 hours on a boat with me sorting out the buoys. His comment was “ That’s the last quote I’m bringing here!”
During the next period we will be welcoming clubs from:
- Edinburgh Medical AC
- Spittal and Tweedmouth AC
- Black Bull FC
As always a warm welcome to you all and let’s hope that you get the good weather without the hot and bright conditions that we have had over the last three weeks or so.
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