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Old 13th June 2010, 15:49
Fishing Reporter
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 20
Charles Inniss is on a distinguished road
Default river torridge update: sunday 13th June

The recommendation of our association that to help restore the sea trout stock of our river to their former level of abundance large sea trout should be released has certainly brought about a healthy response. Well done. Keep the comments coming!! One or two points need clarifying. The Public Inquiry in 1997 was instigated by the netsmen when the EA proposed reducing the netting season to 6 weeks (mid-July to the end of August) and the Association felt it necessary together with the Taw to support the EA. In the end the inspector came down on a netting season of 1st June- 30th August, which at least was two months less than the netsmen wanted. It had nothing whatsoever to do with catch and release!!
As you all know the compulsory catch and release of salmon prior to 16th June is a national bye-law for England and Wales, which started in 1998.
In 2002 this Association together with the Taw bought out, at great expense, 11 of the remaining 14 estuary nets and this must in the medium to long-term help the recovery of our migratory stocks, but to achieve this a good percentage of the extra escapement of fish must be allowed to spawn. Based on the available scientific evidence, our Association recommends large sea trout be returned.
I cannot agree with the comments that the sea trout stock in our river is healthy. In fact I believe it is of far more concern than the stock of salmon.
Let's not get too worked up about all this. All of us are totally against compulsory catch and release and as anglers we have differing opinions about releasing fish. I personally do not have any problems about releasing, but I also like to keep the odd fish for the pot. Our Association is not laying the law down we are only making a recommendation and individual anglers can make their own decisions providing they abide by the bye-laws of the river.
I regard the opportunity to release fish as one of the many tools to try and help restore salmon and sea trout stocks in our river.
I can only add that if there were no restrictions on the rods, there is no way we could have bought out the netsmen and in this very dry summer they would be making a killing.
My final comment for what it is worth: almost without exception anglers on the Torridge have the good of the river at heart and that counts for everything. Charles.
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Old 13th June 2010, 23:32
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 2
sheepwash is on a distinguished road

As a visiting angler on the Torridge for the last 20 years restricted to perhaps less than 12 fishing days a year, with little control over the conditions, the prospect of having to return all large sea trout is not very appealing.
If I lived locally and fished only when conditions were good then returning fish would be far more acceptable, as the chance to catch another would be far greater.
The current rod limits should, in my opinion, give reasonable protection to the stock of fish in the river and are fair to all anglers.
Having said all this I have yet to catch a sea trout over 5 lbs despite several years of trying....
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Old 14th June 2010, 19:27
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 3
mailey is on a distinguished road
Default I hope you catch that 5 pounder!!!

Well Sheepwash I for one hope that you catch that 5+ pounder, on your next visit, and hope you enjoy eating it equally as much.

Because someone like yourself who has put in that much effort over a period of 20 years certainly deserves to catch one, and should not feel under any pressure to return a fish of a life time, unless that is what you wish to do.

Enjoy your fishing and I hope you are feasting very soon.

Good luck and very tight lines
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Old 16th June 2010, 22:50
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 2
sheepwash is on a distinguished road
Default Large Sea Trout

Thank you mailey for your kind words of encouragement. I will be off in the next week or so trying to catch that elusive large sea trout. Perhaps what is most important is having the choice and then acting in a responsible way.
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