Sunday, May 10, 2015

Salmon Fishing Scotland Prospects for the Tay, Perthshire, Scotland week commencing 11th May 2015.

Salmon Fishing Scotland Prospects for the Tay, Perthshire, Scotland week commencing 11th May 2015.

The Spring Salmon fishing season is now into May on the mighty Tay in Perthshire, Scotland and we have had a much colder but unsettled week with some good conditions for the pursuit of that magical spring salmon and some spring sunshine. The weather is to be more settled over the coming week with rain at the start, but hopefully this will not deter the chances of producing good sport and some early "Bars of Silver" if you are prepared to brave the elements. Catches last week despite some unsettled conditions have been consistently good and the quality of the salmon caught remains outstanding but as we go deeper into May hopefully conditions will remain favourable and there will be a further improvement in the run to give more success.
Currently the river is steady with excellent conditions (about 3’ and falling on the Ballathie gauge) but may rise with the recent rain. This hopefully may encourage more spring salmon to run.
The weather is to be far more settled over the end of next week after the current rain this weekend and further rain on Monday. It will remain colder this week that maybe the last bite of winter. Spring salmon are now running hard up the river and spreading rapidly. The milder weather forecast at times and recent big spate triggered off salmon to run the river in improving numbers. Expectation remains very high. The unsettled weather forecast may raise river levels but hopefully not to unsettle the current excellent conditions and make ideal spring fishing conditions. The water temperature has dropped with the colder weather to around 46 degrees Fahrenheit or 8 degrees Celsius but may rise again towards the end of the week. These are typical temperatures for this time of year. The colder weather has benefited the lower beats so far but that is changing rapidly as the fish are spreading so there might be a chance of a fresh fish anywhere in the river after milder conditions prevailed last week.
As to methods, in settled conditions fishing by any method should enable you to catch the elusive Tay Springer. The water temperature has warmed up slowly enabling floating lines to come out with the addition of a sink tip being a favoured tactic and using normal dressed flies. It is still worth a go with sinking lines as well depending on water heights and stripping a Sun Ray Shadow is always worth a go. When spinning, Tay favourites include Toby Salmos, weighted and floating devons, flying C’s and Visons or Rapalas. Harling is also a favoured method at this time of year on many beats.
Finally you are reminded that the Tay's policy for April and May is that all spring salmon should be released, i.e. the Tay has adopted a policy of 100% catch and release for spring salmon. Spring salmon are a scarce and precious resource. Please help preserve both them and the long term future of your sport by following the recommendations. It is vital the river system follows these guide lines to ensure the draconian new Scottish Government Statutory Conservation Regulation rules do not get extended in seasons to come.
The Tay Ghillies Association are continuing their popular FISH OF THE MONTH AWARD to encourage good catch and release practice on the Tay. Each month the winner will receive 2 personalised crystal Whisky glasses engraved with details of the catch and they will automatically be entered into the fish of the year competition for a Stylish Crystal Engraved Decanter.
When releasing salmon please try to keep the fish in the water as much as possible to give them every chance to recover prior to release. Releasing fish from boats in the river is not recommended. Further information on the policy and good release practice.
If you have any news or pictures of catches or experiences on the Tay and you would like to share them please email me on to be included in the reports.

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