Secretary’s Blog- 2018
Happy New Year to all fishers. Lets hope its a good one.
This years AGM will be held in the Salutation Inn on Tuesday the 6th February at 8pm. All members are welcome. The agenda can be found under club news.
Catch returns are slow again this year. You should have submitted one by now, even if its a nil return. These are important and we need the figures to know how well (or badly) the river is doing. Its a condition of membership and you wont be able to re-new your membership if you haven’t submitted yours. Please send yours to the Membership Secretary (Elfed Lewis) ASAP if you haven’t already done so.
We are still waiting to hear from NRW regarding the Salmon and Sea Trout conservation proposals. As soon as I know anything, I will put the news here. I’m not too hopeful. Whilst the aims of the proposals are good, it hits Anglers hard and will put many off fishing all together. We are the ones campaigning for conservation, walking the river and reporting pollution and poaching.
Its been another wet winter. The river has run bank high for the past few months and its been cold. This should have kept the poaching down and allowed the fish to spawn successfully.
WAG have ruled out the proposed NVZ idea. This would have helped our rivers in west Wales as they have a high density of dairy farms in their catchments and slurry is getting to be a big problem. I fear that things will get much worse before those in authority really see the light and understand the full implications of intensive farming and its impact upon river habitats.
Unfortunately, NRW have not been effective in enforcing current regulations. We cant really blame them as they have had their resources cut and have been given additional responsibilities. Without additional funding from WAG, things will only get worse.
Rant over! I’m getting my reels out for oiling.
We held our AGM this week. It was well attended, despite the snow! It took me nearly an hour to travel the 19 miles.
There were no new proposals and the Committee is unchanged. The main debate was around the new By Law proposals. We still don’t know what’s happening. Apparently its now with WAG for a decision.
There was another report of slurry in the Gamman this week. NRW attended, took samples and are investigating. Lets hope they take positive action.
There are still about 30 catch returns due. The fish caught last year are quite good. I will give a final number when all the returns are in.
The waiting is over! The new season is here.
Not much to report at the moment. The river has been bank high for most of the winter and we have quite a lot of work to do. It’s too wet at the moment, but we will get around to most of the jobs before the Sewin start running in earnest.
Most of the catch returns are now in for last season. 44 Salmon and 494 Sewin. Not too bad considering.
We are still none the wiser as to any new by-laws that may or may not come in with regards to catch and release. I think its very poor that these new rules may be introduced mid season, after we have bought out licences! Apparently, WAG are considering the proposals. There has been no communication from NRW to us at all regarding the current position. Shocking! It’s unfortunate that the working relationship between NRW and Anglers has been damaged by this issue and will take some time and considerable effort to mend.
We had a big flood just after the season started. I haven’t heard of any Salmon being taken yet, but sometimes we do get the odd fish taken in the first few weeks of the season. These are Blue backs, not spring Salmon but late spawners, entering the river in January, February and March, spawn quickly and return to the sea. You must return these fish if you are lucky enough to hook one!
Some good news!
NRW have issued a press release stating that there will be no change to the By-Laws this season.
More info here – https://naturalresources.wales/about-us/news-and-events/?lang=en
Remember it’s a Club rule that you release your first caught Salmon and we encourage you to release ALL of your Salmon and any Sewin you don’t personally eat.
The very cold spring has taken it’s toll and the fishing has started off very slowly this year. I haven’t received any reports of fish taken, which is usual for mid May. The first big sewin are normally being taken from the start of May. The nights recently have been cold, with ground frosts, not good for night fishing. The river is at a good height, plenty of water for fish to run, we just need it to warm up a bit.
Do let me know if you have had any luck, or even seen good fish moving. Tight lines!
At last, some rain! We had about 1/2″ last night. It appears we missed most of the rain and unfortunately it wasn’t enough to bring the river up much. The ground is now very dry and it will take a really good downpour to bring the river well up. Still, something is better than nothing. Even a small rise will encourage fish to run.
Not much to report. The river is very low. We desperately need rain. A few sewin are being caught at night in the lower river. Even the odd Salmon has pushed up. The Teifi is also producing a few sewin and is probably a better prospect at the moment.
We had a work party today in Crosswell. We put a small bridge across the ditch up by pwll ceffylau and did lots of clearing. It was nice to see that the river up here is very clean and full of parr.
Thanks to Gavin for the poles.
The rain finally arrived! We had a good wash out yesterday and the fish have responded. Several anglers had a good day yesterday and the night fishing should be good from now on as well. Most of the alga has been washed out and things are looking up. Tight lines.
The graph below shows the Taf for July. Nevern similar.
Apologies for the radio silence but have been busy at home with other projects.
The river is now fairly low again. The lower pools are well stocked with fish but they are very difficult to tempt and catches have been poor generally. There are even a few sewin right up at Crosswell. On the last flood we had about 10 days ago, I turned half a dozen sewin below Crosswell on my favourite floating rapala.
Hopefully, we will get some really good floods before the end of the season. Otherwise, its going to be a season most will want to forget!
Well what a season! Not one we will want to remember. We had a very cold spring which put everything back a few weeks. Then, drought. No rain at all for nearly 12 weeks. There was a small spate in September but then nothing much until the 13th October when all hell broke loose and we had severe flooding.
On a better note, there did seem to be a good number of fish in the river. I know that catches will be down. Many didn’t bother going out and those that did struggled. Lets hope its a good spawning year.
Last but not least, now is the time to submit your catch return. It’s a condition of membership. Do it now, don’t put it off. I did mine tonight – didn’t take long – ha ha ha. Send them to Elfed – Membership Sec.
Wow, we have had some rain this autumn! It’s made up for the long dry summer. The river has been bank high for the past few weeks and over the top last week and the week before. Apparently some telegraph poles washed down the river by Crosswell bridge. I just hope its not our new footbridge we put in this season! The poles were staked and wired into the bank and well above the usual river level. I haven’t been up to look yet. Lets hope its still there.
We have some news on the slurry front. Lesley Griffiths, WAG Rural Affairs Secretary has announced new regulations are to be brought in during 2020. Some will be phased in to give farmers time to adapt. These will control the storage and spreading of slurry in Wales. It’s certainly a step in the right direction, but what concerns me is that NRW already seem unable to enforce the current regulations. Without a major investment in enforcement, I cant see there being significant improvement. It will hit the good, compliant farmers as well as the bad few and those few will continue to flout the rules.