This program, although welcome, has strayed into the realms of condoning illegal activity in respect of Salmon fishing.
Screened today, whilst observing some fishing on the Forth, Paul Young came across one retired looking gent who was fishing away from the general melee of anglers spinning at each others shoulders around 23rd October (?'06 or ?07 season). This angler was also spinning, and was clearly into a largish late season fish, and after some faffing about, it was netted and heaved onto the bank. It was then displayed clearly for weighing, hitting the scale at 20+ lbs, Paul generously allowing 21lbs for this fish. However, the weighing was by hitching the fish under the gill cover by the weigh-hook on the scale, with the fish clearly dead - a coloured cock fish with a substantial kype.
It's my understanding that ALL coloured fish are to be returned in Scotland....is the Forth a 'special case'
"Be you most gentle with your fishing, and even gentler with those you are fortunate enough to capture, as, for a fleeting moment, you will be handling the future parent of the fish that you would wish to cast a fly at tomorrow..."
It sounds as though that fish should have been returned. The law in Scotland makes it an offence to keep 'unclean or unseasonable fish' - the former are generally held to be kelts and the latter fish on the eve of spawning. With a lack of any clear definition it allows activity like this to go unchecked. One person's takeable fish is another gravid fish and it makes the law difficult to enforce in all but the most extreme cases. I once saw a visiting angler on Tweed with a hen fish that was quite literally black. Truly disgusting that people keep fish in such condition.
Saw the same thing happen on the Whiteadder last year, the usual excuse for killing a black fish being that the ,hook was to far down' for removal. Incidently I heard later that threats of violence had been directed in my direction by the guilty party after I had left the scene.
O give me Grace to catch a fish, so big that even I, when telling of it afterwards shall never need to lie.
i was with tweedsider when that black fish was landed on the whitty, the time from landing to killing was not even long enough to see the fly never mind see how far in it was. perhaps the next AGM taking coloured fish should be discussed & new rules put in place
The two best times to fish is when its rainin` and when it aint. Patrick F. McManus
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