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Displaying items by tag: Lough Mask

A newly published research paper co-authored by experts in Ireland highlights the importance of ferox trout to the fisheries of Lough Corrib and Lough Mask.

Ferox trout are highly prized by trophy anglers, and Loughs Corrib and Mask have recorded the majority of Irish specimens since angling records began in the 1950s.

The large, long-lived, fish-eating trout are normally found in deep lakes and are believed to be genetically distinct from normal brown trout, having evolved after the last Ice Age 12,000 years ago.

Little was known about the spawning location of Irish ferox trout compared to normal brown trout, and a radio tracking study was initiated in both catchments in 2005.

Local anglers and Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) staff helped catch large ferox trout on both lakes in order to insert radio tags.

The fish were released after tagging and then tracked with help from the Irish Air Corps helicopter unit and by walking spawning streams with a radio tracking antenna to determine in which streams ferox spawned.

Scientists from Inland Fisheries Ireland worked with colleagues at the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research on the data collected in this study.

Results from radio tracking showed that the majority (92%) of ferox trout tagged in Lough Corrib spawned in a single spawning stream, the Cong River, while the majority (76%) of ferox trout tagged in Lough Mask spawned in the Cong canal and Cong River.

These results, as published in the Journal of Fish Biology, indicate that these streams are most likely the principle spawning locations of ferox trout in both lakes.

Dr Paddy Gargan, senior research officer at Inland Fisheries Ireland and lead author on the publication, said: “The occurrence of ferox trout predominantly in single spawning rivers in both catchments highlights the vulnerability of the ferox populations with estimates of their population size thought to be small”.

IFI’s head of research Dr Cathal Gallagher welcomed the findings and said: “It was important that conservation measures, based on this research, have been introduced in the Corrib and Mask catchments continue to protect ferox trout.

“These conservation measures have reduced the number of ferox trout being killed and claimed as specimens and support the conservation of this unique trout.”

Published in Marine Science

Leitrim angler Bernard Kilkenny claimed the World Cup in trout fly angling on Lough Mask last weekend, as Derek Evans notes in today’s Irish Times.

His five trout at 5.73lb secured the title — as well as a boat with 15HP outboard, and a new rod and reel — in what was “the most drawn-out in the 63 years of the championships”, with poor weather meaning three attempts over a whole month were required.

Elsewhere, two anglers caused a headache for marine wildlife lovers in Wicklow yesterday (Sunday 8 September) when they were spotted fishing just meters from a protected seal colony.

According to Wicklow News, the men had ignored signs warning away from the seals, as well as the pleas of several onlookers, but left the area after they were spoken to by gardaí.

It is recommended that the public stay at least 100 metres away from seals as they enter their breeding season and seek safe space on land from September to the end of the year.

Published in Angling

The Irish Times reports that a search is under way on Lough Mask for a fisherman who failed to return to shore yesterday (Friday 8 March).

The local man, an experienced angling enthusiast in his 70s, had set out at noon but the alarm was raised when he did not return by evening, and after weather conditions has worsened on the lake.

The man’s boat was recovered earlier today (Saturday 9 March). Gardai said searches with the Irish Coast Guard were continuing.

Published in Angling
Tagged under

#Angling - Nigel Greene was the big winner at the World Cup Trout Fly Angling Championships on Lough Mask over the August Bank Holiday, as Derek Evans writes for The Irish Times.

The Fermanagh fly fisherman bested a field of more than 450 anglers at the 62nd hosting of the event, considered “the ultimate prize in trout angling”.

Greene’s final count total of seven fish with a weight of 9.772lb put him almost half a pound over his closest rival – despite Kanturk’s Michael Twohig catching one more fish.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Angling

#Angling - Wild brown trout in Connacht lakes face extinction due to unchecked numbers of pike, local anglers fear.

According to Galway Bay FM, the Connacht Angling Council says stocks in Lough Corrib and Lough Mask are among those under threat unless measures such as a closed season for angling and a pike cull are introduced.

Ahead of its ‘Pike are Predators – Save our Wild Brown Trout’ campaign launch this Wednesday 20 September from 8pm at the Boat Inn in Oughterard, the council has launched an online petition in the hopes of persuading Inland Fisheries Ireland to take action against the “predator” species.

Published in Angling

#Angling - Thomas O'Loughlin's impressive 12-fish catch was more than enough to snag him the top prize at the World Cup Trout Fly Angling Championship on Lough Mask recently.

The Corofin, Co Clare native's final bag of 13.43lbs was 50% larger than that of his closest rival Jonathan Craven of Connacht in the 60th running of the competition, which took place over five days ending on Monday 1 August, as the Clare Champion reports.

His victory marks the first for any Clare angler in the Lough Mask contest – but is just the latest in a series of accolades for 'Tommy', who comes from an experienced family of game anglers.

The Clare Champion has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Angling

#EngineTheft - The Mayo News reports that three boat engines have been stolen from moorings on Lough Mask in Co Mayo over the last fortnight.

Two engines were reported taken at Cahir Pier, a spot popular with tourists, while the third theft occurred at Burke's Island.

“It’s prevalent around the country, and it has happened on Lough Corrib, but it’s the first time it’s happened here," said local angler Denis Kelleher about the thefts. "It’s something I had hoped would stay away from the area."

Kelleher noted that with only one road in and out of both areas, installation of CCTV might prove a deterrent to any future burglaries - though local councillor Michael Burke raised concerns about how such a system would be managed.

The Mayo News has more on the story HERE.

Published in News Update
Tagged under

#ANGLING - The going is tough in the last weeks of this year's angling season on Lough Mask, as Mayo Today reports.

Though anglers are still out in good numbers despite the shortening days and drop in temperature, catch numbers are way down on the angling bonanza that marked the beginning of a season that also produced a record-breaking monster trout on nearby Lough Corrib.

The best fishing was seen at the Vintners Federation of Ireland contest on the lough two weeks ago, where the prize-winning catch was a total of seven trout for 4.21kg.

Meanwhile, Celebrity World Cup champ Mick Dunne won the Molloy Cup catch-and-release contest with his catch of five trout measuring 157cm in total.

Elsewhere in Mayo, the River Moy has been more productive, with 199 salmon reported in the seven days preceding 19 September, and Lough Conn and Lough Beltra anglers have also reported some good fishing.

The news makes up for the "relative quiet" on the Newport Rover, and the significant decrease in catches on the Ballisodare Fishery.

Published in Angling

#ANGLING - Inland Fisheries Ireland has teamed up with the committee behind the World Cup Trout Fly Angling Championship to develop a biosecurity initiative for the contest, taking place on Lough Mask from 2-6 August.

The premier event in the angling calendar will be contested by up to 500 keen fly fishermen from Ireland and abroad, each anticipating lifting the coveted World Cup.

The anglers that fish this competition realise the true gem that Lough Mask represents, providing quality angling in clean, unpolluted waters.

Towards that end, the biosecurity initiative aims to prevent non-native invasive species and harmful aquatic pathogens being inadvertently introduced into the lake on angling equipment.

Central to the initiative is that all anglers must disinfect their landing nets and boots each day before registering for the competition.

Anglers will be requested to co-operate with stewards on each morning and to bring their landing nets and boots with them to the registration centre. There, they will dip their gear in supervised disinfection tanks and receive a stamp from the Biosecurity Steward to show that they have used the facility.

Only anglers who can show this stamp to the Registration Officer will be registered to fish the competition on that day.

In recent years, despite considerable effort on behalf of IFI and many other angling and conservation groups, the non-native invasive Zebra mussel was introduced to Lough Mask.

Invasions elsewhere in Ireland's inland waterways include the notorious Asian clam, which has taken residence from the River Shannon to the Grand Canal.

The present biosecurity initiative - which follows the recent launch of a smartphone app to identify and report aquatic invasive species - represents an effort to make anglers aware of the dangers posed, and to alert them to the fact that other harmful and environmentally damaging invasive species are present on the island of Ireland, and that these can be inadvertently introduced to the lake on wet nets or soiled boots.

Information packages relating to the threats posed by invasive species will be available to anglers’ during the competition.

Published in Angling

#ANGLING - Despite the Nor'easterly winds and rain in recent days, anglers on Co Mayo's lakes and rivers have reported good fishing, as Mayo Today reports.

Saturday 28 April was the day for the Trout Federation of Ireland's Connacht Cup on Lough Mask, which saw an impressive count of 149 trout caught by 31 anglers from seven different clubs.

Eugene Nolan of Annaghdown took the top spot with 18 trout, five more than second place finisher Martin Feerick of Partry. Third place was taken by Aidan Hodgins of Loughrea, which also took the overall team title.

Meanwhile, the River Moy had its best week of the salmon season so far, with 70 fish caught throughout the system.

Foxford Salmon Anglers member Joe Cassidy landed an enormous 16lb salmon upstream of Foxford, one of a number of catches in various parts that broke the 10lb mark.

And with water levels good thanks to the recent heavy rains, expectations have been raised for an even better catch this week.

Published in Angling
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Coastal Notes Coastal Notes covers a broad spectrum of stories, events and developments in which some can be quirky and local in nature, while other stories are of national importance and are on-going, but whatever they are about, they need to be told.

Stories can be diverse and they can be influential, albeit some are more subtle than others in nature, while other events can be immediately felt. No more so felt, is firstly to those living along the coastal rim and rural isolated communities. Here the impact poses is increased to those directly linked with the sea, where daily lives are made from earning an income ashore and within coastal waters.

The topics in Coastal Notes can also be about the rare finding of sea-life creatures, a historic shipwreck lost to the passage of time and which has yet many a secret to tell. A trawler's net caught hauling more than fish but cannon balls dating to the Napoleonic era.

Also focusing the attention of Coastal Notes, are the maritime museums which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of historical exhibits for future generations.

Equally to keep an eye on the present day, with activities of existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector and those of the energy exploration industry.

In addition Coastal Notes has many more angles to cover, be it the weekend boat leisure user taking a sedate cruise off a long straight beach on the coast beach and making a friend with a feathered companion along the way.

In complete contrast is to those who harvest the sea, using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety poses an issue, before they set off to ply their trade at the foot of our highest sea cliffs along the rugged wild western seaboard.

It's all there, as Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied to the environment from which they came from and indeed which shape people's interaction with the surrounding environment that is the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

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