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Displaying items by tag: Irish Specimen Fish Committee

A unique record of very large fish caught and released by anglers in Ireland over the past 60 years has just been published.

The 220-page Irish Specimen Fish Atlas covers 83 various species nationwide. It was compiled by the Irish Fish Specimen Committee and supported by Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

The atlas presents information on the distribution and frequency of more than 27,000 individual specimen fish — about 420 per annum on average since 1955 — reflecting the quality of angling for distinctive large fish species in Ireland over time.

Dr William Roche, co-author and senior research officer with IFI said: “The Irish Specimen Fish Atlas offers a different insight into fish populations here, and shows where quality fish — of many distinctive species — can be caught by anglers in the productive waters within, and around, the island of Ireland.

“This accessible publication identifies many Irish waters where and when big fish have been, and are still being, caught.

The A4 full-colour Irish Specimen Fish Atlas costs €29 including postage (for Ireland and NI) and is available to purchase from the Irish Specimen Fish CommitteeThe A4 full-colour Irish Specimen Fish Atlas costs €29 including postage (for Ireland and NI) and is available to purchase from the Irish Specimen Fish Committee

“But it also reveals a drop in numbers of large individual fish in about 40% of species. Some ‘newer’ ones such as thick-lipped mullet are improving, but more ‘traditional’ species, including cod and salmon, are in decline.

“The decrease in numbers of large fish of some species is concerning although not consistent across the board. The reasons for these declines are varied and complex. For commercial marine species, over-exploitation may be a factor. Non-commercial marine species are vulnerable to pressures such as being caught unintentionally as by-catch.

“Pressures on freshwater fish vary from catchment to catchment, and may include deterioration of water quality, the presence of dams and weirs, and reduced habitat quality.

“However, overall there are plenty of species providing quality specimen angling, and offering great scope for enjoyment of being outdoors and fishing on rivers, lakes and/or marine waters which characterise many parts of Ireland.”

The A4 full-colour Irish Specimen Fish Atlas is priced at €29 including postage (for Ireland and NI) and is available to purchase on the Irish Specimen Fish Committee website. For further details contact [email protected].

Published in Angling

Angling enthusiasts fishing Irish waters caught hundreds of huge fish in 2021, according to the recently published Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) report.
 
One new Irish record was set by Jim Clohessy from Cork, who broke the existing record for a rare species, the stone basse, when fishing off Cork Harbour.
 
Over 470 exceptionally large fish of different species were caught by anglers from venues throughout Ireland in 2021. The main species were smaller shark species like spurdog and, in freshwater, tench, roach-bream hybrids and brown trout dominated. All fish were caught, weighed, measured and released.
 
Details of these fish and current Irish record fish are in the Irish Specimen Fish Committee Report 2021, which is now available to download from the ISFC website and in print from Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) offices around the country, free of charge.
 
The ISFC, which is supported by IFI, is an independent all-Ireland voluntary body which verifies and records the capture of large fish caught on rod by anglers in freshwater and marine waters.
 
The committee’s awards event, when anglers will be presented with their awards and certificates, will be held on Saturday 5 November at the Clayton Hotel in Leopardstown, Co Dublin.

Published in Angling

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, anglers fishing in Irish waters in 2020 caught hundreds of large fish — according to the latest Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) report.

One new record was set — for a 12.02kg smooth-hound hooked off Wicklow in July last year by Dublin angler John Hughes — and over 300 exceptionally large fish of different species were caught by anglers from venues throughout Ireland.

The main species were sharks like smooth-hound and spurdog while in freshwater, pike and brown trout dominated. All fish were caught, weighed, measured and released.

Amy O’Brien with dad Sidney, winner of the Dr AEJ Went Award for Young Specimen Angler of the Year with her 1.02kg golden grey mulletAmy O’Brien with dad Sidney, winner of the Dr AEJ Went Award for Young Specimen Angler of the Year with her 1.02kg golden grey mullet

Details of all these fish and current Irish record fish are in the Irish Specimen Fish Committee Report 2020, which has just been released and is available to download HERE. Hard copies will be available in mid-May.

The ISFC, which is supported by Inland Fisheries Ireland, is an independent all-Ireland voluntary body which verifies and records the capture of large fish caught on rod by anglers in freshwater and marine waters.

Published in Angling

#Angling - Four new Irish record fish were caught by anglers last year, according to the just published Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) report for 2018.

New records were set for four marine species: golden grey mullet, thin-lipped mullet, black bream and tope.

The two mullet species were taken in Cork, with Noel Lane from Cork taking the 2.95kg thin-lipped mullet from Cork Harbour on 15 July, and Stephen O’Neill hooking the golden grey mullet of 1.52kg on 15 August.

Elsewhere, the 34.02kg tope was caught off Greystones, Co Wicklow by Stephen Hanway from Dublin on 3 October, and Kilmore Quay in Co Wexford was the venue for the 1.45kg black sea bream caught by Welsh angler Gordon Thornes on 17 September.

The anglers will be presented with their awards and certificates at the ISFC Awards Day on Saturday 16 February in conjunction with the Ireland Angling Show at the National Show Centre in Swords.

Further details of these record fish are in the Irish Specimen Fish Committee Report 2018. The committee, which is supported by Inland Fisheries Ireland, is an independent all-Ireland voluntary body which verifies and records the capture of large fish caught on rod by anglers in freshwater and marine waters.

As well as the new record, detailed information on 393 specimen fish (large fish) taken by anglers from venues throughout Ireland in 2018, comprising many different species, is detailed in the report.

The main species were smaller shark species like smooth hound and spurdog, while in freshwater, carp and pike dominated. All fish were caught, weighed, measured and released.

Hard copies of the report are available from Inland Fisheries Ireland offices nationally.

Published in Angling

#Angling - The number of successful young anglers collecting their specimen award certificates was the highlight of the Irish Specimen Fish Committee’s Awards Day on Friday 20 February.

Held in Dublin on the same weekend as the Ireland Angling Show 2016, both events were attended by large numbers of anglers from all over the country and abroad – such as Dutch angler Henk Thuelings, who travelled from the Netherlands to collect his specimen award for a large tope taken off Wicklow.

Record fish and specimen awards were presented, and for many anglers this full-on angling weekend is now a curtain-raiser for the forthcoming angling season.

Guest speaker Jim Clohessy, the well-known angler and TopFisher.eu angling magazine editor, spoke about specimen angling in Ireland and the value that anglers add to understanding about fish and their status in Irish waters through claiming specimen fish.

In his review, ISFC chair Dr Robert Rosell highlighted that species including thick-lipped mullet, smooth hound and carp dominated in 2015 and some new rules for specimen fish claimants.

He also informed the large audience about common skate, angel shark (monkfish), undulate ray and porbeagle shark being restored to the list of eligible species in 2016 and mainly for the purposes of collecting information about these vulnerable fish species. All will be length-based specimens only and, as with the vast majority of specimen fish, all will be catch and release.

The unstinting support of Inland Fisheries Ireland was acknowledged by both speakers who recognised the importance of the funding and logistical inputs provided to the ISFC.

The awards were presented to successful anglers by Clohessy and Dr Rosell.

Published in Angling

#Angling - The Irish Specimen Fish Committee has just ratified two new Irish record fish.

Dublin angler Tom Lynch has broken the Irish twaite shad record with a 1.64kg specimen from the River Barrow at St Mullins, caught on 15 May last, while the new smooth hound record was broken by Gareth Murphy with an 8.62kg whopper from Wicklow Bay on 24 May.

Full details are in the Irish Specimen Fish Committee report for 2015 which just been released and is available on the ISFC website or from the Inland Fisheries Ireland website.

As well as the new record fish, detailed information on almost 450 specimen fish (ie large fish) taken by anglers from venues throughout Ireland in 2015 are presented.

Hard copies of the report will be available from 18 January from Inland Fisheries Ireland offices nationally.

The new report has details of 45 different species of specimen fish taken by anglers in 2015.

Thirty-two different species (including blue shark, pollock, several species of ray, gilthead bream, etc) were taken by sea anglers while freshwater anglers accounted for the remaining species.

Particularly large numbers of specimen thick lipped mullet (16% of total ratified) and smooth hound (14%) were caught, weighed and released, and in freshwater, carp (10%) dominated specimen returns. Large numbers of the exotic mullet species, golden greys and thin-lipped, were also ratified.

The ISFC Awards Day, when anglers will be presented with their awards and certificates, will be held on Saturday 20 February in Dublin in conjunction with the Irish Angling Show weekend.

Meanwhile, anglers both at home and abroad will be reading the report carefully to plan their angling trips to catch the big fish in Ireland in 2016.

Download a PDF copy of the Irish Specimen Fish 2015 report HERE.

Published in Angling

#Angling - Four Irish angling records set in 2014 were recognised at the recent Irish Specimen Fish Awards, as Derek Evans writes in The Irish Times.

Aaron Cummins, Ian Mulligan, Stephen O'Neill and Tom Walsh were all noted for their respective record landings of carp, thin-lipped mullet, golden grey mullet and spur dogfish between June and October last year, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

And the ceremony at Bewley's Hotel in North Dublin, with a keynote address by broadcaster and angler Derek Davis, also saw Conor Ward of Balintglass, Co Wicklow receive the Dr Arthur Went Award for young specimen angler of the year for his 5.75lb roach/bream caught at Lough Nablahy in Roscommon.

The Irish Times has more on the story and other angling news HERE.

Published in Angling

#Angling - A new record has been set by the Dublin Angling Initiative with 16-year-old Eric Cahill catching a fish of a lifetime - a 12lb ferox trout from Lough Ramor in Virginia, Co Cavan.

This is the biggest fish ever caught by a youngster out angling with the Dublin Angling Initiative (DAI).

The fishing trip for a group of 10 young anglers was organised for Mulhuddart Foróige Fishing to Lough Ramor by Des Chew of the DAI in March.

Following an introduction by Des on the setting up of rods, rigs and bait presentation, the youngsters were soon fishing for roach, hybrids and perch with others choosing to fish for pike.

Great fun was being had by the group who were catching and releasing lots of coarse fish.


Meanwhile, Eric patiently waited for a pike to take his smelt deadbait. He signalled for assistance when his rod tip nodded indicating a take. Under the guidance of Des Chew and Chris McGregor, he was instructed to knock his bale arm over so this cagey fish would feel no resistance.

Suddenly there was a short run and Eric struck. It was obvious he had a big fish on. When the fish drew close, the golden-spotted body revealed that Eric was now playing a fish of a lifetime and maybe the first specimen caught by a DAI angler.

The fish was landed amid great excitement by the kids, youth workers and a crowd of local anglers alike.

Before release it was weighed on certified scales, and laid out and measured on an Inland Fisheries Ireland measuring mat. It reached a length of over 80cm and weighed in at over 12 lbs.

There was jubilation among Eric and his peers as Des announced that he had just caught the first specimen from over 10,000 teenagers who have participated in DAI courses over the last 15 years.

If this fish is ratified by the Irish Specimen Fish Committee it will also be the first specimen recorded from Lough Ramor.

Eric Cahill has been a member of Mulhuddart Foróige Fishing in west Dublin since he has been 10 years of age. During that time the DAI says he has always shown unique ability to listen and learn angling skills from his tutors.

He has attended numerous fishing courses in game, coarse and sea fishing run by the DAI with his Foróige youth officers, Bernie Moloney and Siobhan Hennessy.

According to Inland Fisheries Ireland, this was truly a very proud moment for Eric and the Dublin Angling Initiative, whose members now have a new record to beat!

Published in Angling

#Angling - The Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) held its Specimen Fish Awards Day yesterday (Sunday 17 February) in Swords, Co Dublin coinciding with the Ireland Angling Show 2013.

Successful anglers from all over Ireland who caught specimen fish in lakes, rivers or in the sea in 2012 were congratulated by Minister of State for Natural Resources Fergus O’Dowd on their excellent achievements.

Last year was a record one for angling in Ireland, with a total of 640 specimen fish being ratified.

Minister O'Dowd said: “The Government recognises that angling is hugely important to the tourist industry and to the economy generally. Preliminary information from a survey commissioned by IFI estimates that angling tourism spend is €250m million per annum – approximately €150m of which is generated by domestic anglers.

"Angling opportunities in Ireland are among the best in the world and this is reflected in the demand for the product and the numbers engaged in it both at home and from abroad.

"The quality of our angling resource is reflected in the annual report of the Irish Specimen Fish Committee. The committee accepted over 640 claims in 2012 – a record. Irish anglers took over 90% of these fish with visitors from overseas taking the remainder.”

The minster also emphasised the importance of the half-century of information about large fish caught by anglers in Ireland, both freshwater and marine, which has been collected by the ISFC over the years.

This information is not only an important historical and heritage record but also a vital guide for anglers when choosing the best angling venues, dates, times and method to catch large specimens of their favourite species.

Anglers departed the awards event with their certificates and plenty of information to target new species in the new angling season in 2013.

The Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) report 2013 can be downloaded from www.irish-trophy-fish.com. If you catch a big fish in 2013, log on to the website to see how to register your fish as a specimen.

Published in Angling

#ANGLING - The Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) will be accepting submissions of specimen claims for shad and cyprinids - such as roach, rudd and their hybrids - till 17 October.

The submission date has been brought forward due to the sophisticated genetic analysis involved in evaluating such specimens, which takes a considerable amount of time and expertise - and is necessary for their conservation, and to ensure the claims are processed in time for publication in the ISFC's 2012 specimen fish report.

All other claims should be submitted as soon as possible so that the ISFC can begin to assess all claims.

In other news from the ISFC, the next edition of its annual awards day will take place on Saturday 16 February 2013 at Bewley's Airport Hotel, coinciding with the 2013 Ireland Angling Expo at the National Show Centre.

Bewley's Airport Hotel will have a free courtesy bus running between the hotel and show. For anglers travelling to either event, the hotel also have special room rates staring at €59 per room. See the Ireland Angling Expo website for more details.

Published in Angling
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Annalise Murphy, Olympic Silver Medalist

The National Yacht Club's Annalise Murphy (born 1 February 1990) is a Dublin Bay sailor who won a silver medal in the 2016 Summer Olympics. She is a native of Rathfarnham, a suburb of Dublin.

Murphy competed at the 2012 Summer Olympics in the Women's Laser Radial class. She won her first four days of sailing at the London Olympics and, on the fifth day, came in 8th and 19th position.

They were results that catapulted her on to the international stage but those within the tiny sport of Irish sailing already knew her of world-class capability in a breeze and were not surprised.

On the sixth day of the competition, she came 2nd and 10th and slipped down to second, just one point behind the Belgian world number one.

Annalise was a strong contender for the gold medal but in the medal race, she was overtaken on the final leg by her competitors and finished in 4th, her personal best at a world-class regatta and Ireland's best Olympic class result in 30 years.

Radial European Gold

Murphy won her first major medal at an international event the following year on home waters when she won gold at the 2013 European Sailing Championships on Dublin Bay.

Typically, her track record continues to show that she performs best in strong breezes that suit her large stature (height: 1.86 m Weight: 72 kg).

She had many international successes on her road to Rio 2016 but also some serious setbacks including a silver fleet finish in flukey winds at the world championships in the April of Olympic year itself.

Olympic Silver Medal

On 16 August 2016, Murphy won the silver medal in the Laser Radial at the 2016 Summer Olympics defying many who said her weight and size would go against her in Rio's light winds.

As Irish Times Sailing Correspondent David O'Brien pointed out: " [The medal] was made all the more significant because her string of consistent results was achieved in a variety of conditions, the hallmark of a great sailor. The medal race itself was a sailing master class by the Dubliner in some decidedly fickle conditions under Sugarloaf mountain".

It was true that her eight-year voyage ended with a silver lining but even then Murphy was plotting to go one better in Tokyo four years later.

Sportswoman of the Year

In December 2016, she was honoured as the Irish Times/Sport Ireland 2016 Sportswoman of the Year.

In March, 2017, Annalise Murphy was chosen as the grand marshal of the Dublin St Patrick's day parade in recognition of her achievement at the Rio Olympics.

She became the Female World Champion at the Moth Worlds in July 2017 in Italy but it came at a high price for the Olympic Silver medallist. A violent capsize in the last race caused her to sustain a knee injury which subsequent scans revealed to be serious. 

Volvo Ocean Race

The injury was a blow for her return to the Olympic Laser Radial discipline and she withdrew from the 2017 World Championships. But, later that August, to the surprise of many, Murphy put her Tokyo 2020 ambitions on hold for a Volvo Ocean Race crew spot and joined Dee Caffari’s new Turn the Tide On Plastic team that would ultimately finish sixth from seventh overall in a global circumnavigation odyssey.

Quits Radial for 49erFX

There were further raised eyebrows nine months later when, during a break in Volvo Ocean Race proceedings, in May 2018 Murphy announced she was quitting the Laser Radial dinghy and was launching a 49er FX campaign for Tokyo 2020. Critics said she had left too little time to get up to speed for Tokyo in a new double-handed class.

After a 'hugely challenging' fourteen months for Murphy and her crew Katie Tingle, it was decided after the 2019 summer season that their 'Olympic medal goal' was no longer realistic, and the campaign came to an end. Murphy saying in interviews “I guess the World Cup in Japan was a bit of a wakeup call for me, I was unable to see a medal in less than twelve months and that was always the goal".

The pair raced in just six major regattas in a six-month timeframe. 

Return to Radial

In September 2019, Murphy returned to the Laser Radial dinghy and lead a four-way trial for the Tokyo 2020 Irish Olympic spot after the first of three trials when she finished 12th at the Melbourne World Championships in February 2020.

Selection for Tokyo 2021

On June 11, Irish Sailing announced Annalise Murphy had been nominated in the Laser Radial to compete at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021. Murphy secured the Laser Radial nomination after the conclusion of a cut short trials in which rivals Aoife Hopkins, Aisling Keller and Eve McMahon also competed.

Disappointment at Tokyo 2021

After her third Olympic Regatta, there was disappointment for Murphy who finished 18th overall in Tokyo. On coming ashore after the last race, she indicated her intention to return to studies and retire from Olympic sailing.  

On 6th Aguust 2020, Murphy wrote on Facebook:  "I am finally back home and it’s been a week since I finished racing, I have been lucky enough to experience the highs and the lows of the Olympics. I am really disappointed, I can’t pretend that I am not. I wasn’t good enough last week, the more mistakes I made the more I lost confidence in my decision making. Two years ago I made a plan to try and win a gold medal in the Radial, I believed that with my work ethic and attitude to learning, that everything would work out for me. It didn’t work out this time but I do believe that it’s worth dreaming of winning Olympic medals as I’m proof that it is possible, I also know how scary it is to try knowing you might not be good enough!
I am disappointed for Rory who has been my coach for 15 years, we’ve had some great times together and I wish I could have finished that on a high. I have so much respect for Olympic sailing coaches. They also have to dedicate their lives to getting to the games. I know I’ll always appreciate the impact Rory has had on my life as a person.
I am so grateful for the support I have got from my family and friends, I have definitely been selfish with my time all these years and I hope I can now make that up to you all! Thanks to Kate, Mark and Rónán for always having my back! Thank you to my sponsors for believing in me and supporting me. Thank you Tokyo for making these games happen! It means so much to the athletes to get this chance to do the Olympics.
I am not too sure what is next for me, I definitely don’t hate sailing which is a positive. I love this sport, even when it doesn’t love me 😂. Thank you everyone for all the kind words I am finally getting a chance to read!"

Annalise Murphy, Olympic Sailor FAQs

Annalise Murphy is Ireland’s best performing sailor at Olympic level, with a silver medal in the Laser Radial from Rio 2016.

Annalise Murphy is from Rathfarnham, a suburb in south Co Dublin with a population of some 17,000.

Annalise Murphy was born on 1 February 1990, which makes her 30 years old as of 2020.

Annalise Murphy’s main competition class is the Laser Radial. Annalise has also competed in the 49erFX two-handed class, and has raced foiling Moths at international level. In 2017, she raced around the world in the Volvo Ocean Race.

In May 2018, Annalise Murphy announced she was quitting the Laser Radial and launching a campaign for Tokyo 2020 in the 49erFX with friend Katie Tingle. The pairing faced a setback later that year when Tingle broke her arm during training, and they did not see their first competition until April 2019. After a disappointing series of races during the year, Murphy brought their campaign to an end in September 2019 and resumed her campaign for the Laser Radial.

Annalise Murphy is a longtime and honorary member of the National Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire.

Aside from her Olympic success, Annalise Murphy won gold at the 2013 European Sailing Championships on Dublin Bay.

So far Annalise Murphy has represented Ireland at two Olympic Games.

Annalise Murphy has one Olympic medal, a silver in the Women’s Laser Radial from Rio 2016.

Yes; on 11 June 2020, Irish Sailing announced Annalise Murphy had been nominated in the Women’s Laser Radial to compete at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in 2021.

Yes; in December 2016, Annalise Murphy was honoured as the Irish Times/Sport Ireland 2016 Sportswoman of the Year. In the same year, she was also awarded Irish Sailor of the Year.

Yes, Annalise Murphy crewed on eight legs of the 2017-18 edition of The Ocean Race.

Annalise Murphy was a crew member on Turn the Tide on Plastic, skippered by British offshore sailor Dee Caffari.

Annalise Murphy’s mother is Cathy McAleavy, who competed as a sailor in the 470 class at the Olympic Games in Seoul in 1988.

Annalise Murphy’s father is Con Murphy, a pilot by profession who is also an Olympic sailing race official.

Annalise Murphy trains under Irish Sailing Performance head coach Rory Fitzpatrick, with whom she also prepared for her silver medal performance in Rio 2016.

Annalise Murphy trains with the rest of the team based at the Irish Sailing Performance HQ in Dun Laoghaire Harbour.

Annalise Murphy height is billed as 6 ft 1 in, or 183cm.

©Afloat 2020

At A Glance – Annalise Murphy Significant Results

2016: Summer Olympics, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Silver

2013: European Championships, Dublin, Ireland – Gold

2012: Summer Olympics, London, UK – 4th

2011: World Championships, Perth, Australia – 6th

2010: Skandia Sail for Gold regatta – 10th

2010: Became the first woman to win the Irish National Championships.

2009: World Championships – 8th

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