Please find below a roundup of 2016 season:
Catch data (2015 in brackets) :-
Returns received : 24 (20) from a possible 38 (42)
Number of fish recorded : 337 (471)
Brown Trout 241 (317) : Grayling 96 (154) : Rainbow Trout 0 (0)
Shockerwick (16th Oct – 31st Dec) : Grayling – Nil reported (15)
Largest fish: a brown trout of 1.5lb : two grayling, one approx 2 to 3lb and one of 42cm (photo attached).
Fish were caught on a wide range of artificials from midges, olives, mayfly, nymph patterns, shrimp etc. etc.
April fishing proved very productive for one member – other returns show he probably had the brook to himself, catching 29 trout from 0.5lb to 1.5lb and a grayling approx. 1.5 lb all taking a g/hd ptn. Members choosing not to fish until at least May missed some good early season sport.
The trout season is a short one – best to get fishing early on before bankside growth gets going; access to the brook will be clearer; fish a heavy nymph deep if water levels are high with fast flows.
May and June saw more anglers out and the most fish caught – mayfly patterns being the favoured choice and most successful. Frustratingly though, as every season, the trout became very picky at times and flogging away with the dry could be less productive than fishing with a nymph or emergent mayfly, or a change to a small dry olive or caddis.
Low summer flows made for hard fishing and many stayed away from the brook. Daytime fishing found the fish absent altogether from their usual lies in the fast runs, now running slow and shallow. Those who fished into the evening caught well on small caddis, small olives and emergent patterns.
Most anglers did not fish late season, but opportunities were missed with trout still feeding well and grayling coming into their prime and ready to take a weighted nymph sub-surface.
The team of volunteers led by Nick Maggs (email@example.com) carried out essential clearance and improvement work during the year but much more could be achieved if more members gave up a little of their time to assist. This activity is good exercise and a chat with fellow brook fishers brings useful tips on the fishing.
The ‘riverfly monitoring’ small team kept up monthly sampling at Shockerwick and Box during 2016. This vital sampling and identification work picks up early onset of deteriorating water quality. Results for 2016 showed no deterioration.
In summary – Catch totals were down on previous seasons, possibly because members for one reason or another fished less often. Also an otter seen at Shockerwick may have spooked the fish if it stayed for a while. However, with all fish reportedly in good condition the indications are the fishery is in good health.
Given fair conditions members have much to look forward to this coming season, but must however remain ever vigilant of threats to the well being of the brook and its wildlife.
M/ship and permit renewals as my e-mail of 1st January.