Ribble 2020

Salmo solar

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Let's hope it's the start of an improving picture for the ribble, although they didn't like showing themselves much Fred. Bit of a random question but all the Salmon I caught this year were hens and it has been similar in previous years. Just wondering whether anyone else had similar ratios of hens to cocks. I know years ago when more fish were taken for the table the suggestion was always to return the hens, but I have also read a few articles in the past about female hormones/chemicals released into water affecting the sex balance of some species. Or it could be maybe I'm good at attracting females, lol.

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budge

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Good numbers compared to the past couple of seasons, let's hope there's a good spawning with no major floods. I wonder how many of them have actually run into the river during October ? Or have the bulk of them been lying in the bigger pools waiting for spawning time ?

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Saint Andrews

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Good numbers compared to the past couple of seasons, let's hope there's a good spawning with no major floods. I wonder how many of them have actually run into the river during October ? Or have the bulk of them been lying in the bigger pools waiting for spawning time ?

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More like the later IMO Budge, most are fish that have been in the river for months. Remember salmon dont run in one direction, some run up river then drop back to run up again later in the season. I wonder how many times have we counted fish running in Oct as a new run when reality is weve seen the same fish running months before? Ref the ratio of hens to cocks, most of the Ribble stock is made up of late spring and summer fish, usually 2 sea winter with some 3 sea winter thrown in. As we know a majority of spring and early summer fish are hens. There is a larger cock component of the grilse run which has been declining year on year. Whilst that might sound alarming we know some cocks can spawn with multiple hens and Male parr can and do fertilise hen fish eggs so a ratio of one to one, hen to cock, is not necessarily required to ensure all egg deposits are fertilised..
 

budge

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More like the later IMO Budge, most are fish that have been in the river for months. Remember salmon dont run in one direction, some run up river then drop back to run up again later in the season. I wonder how many times have we counted fish running in Oct as a new run when reality is weve seen the same fish running months before? Ref the ratio of hens to cocks, most of the Ribble stock is made up of late spring and summer fish, usually 2 sea winter with some 3 sea winter thrown in. As we know a majority of spring and early summer fish are hens. There is a larger cock component of the grilse run which has been declining year on year. Whilst that might sound alarming we know some cocks can spawn with multiple hens and Male parr can and do fertilise hen fish eggs so a ratio of one to one, hen to cock, is not necessarily required to ensure all egg deposits are fertilised..
My thoughts too. I've no doubt there's a few run into the river late season ( I had one day before season ended last year) but certainly not in those numbers. I haven't heard of any fresh fish caught for weeks.

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Andrew B

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I remember in old Ribble report from the 90s of a gentleman fishing Calderfoot who sadly had a heart attack whilst fishing and when found there was ten pound sea trout still attached to his rod.
such a sad story but it does highlight how big Ribble sea trout were and maybe still are. 2005 saw possibly one of the greatest fly caught sea trout feats in the country with something like four sea trout all over 12lb - 18lb at Calderfoot.
 

Andrew B

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More like the later IMO Budge, most are fish that have been in the river for months. Remember salmon dont run in one direction, some run up river then drop back to run up again later in the season. I wonder how many times have we counted fish running in Oct as a new run when reality is weve seen the same fish running months before? Ref the ratio of hens to cocks, most of the Ribble stock is made up of late spring and summer fish, usually 2 sea winter with some 3 sea winter thrown in. As we know a majority of spring and early summer fish are hens. There is a larger cock component of the grilse run which has been declining year on year. Whilst that might sound alarming we know some cocks can spawn with multiple hens and Male parr can and do fertilise hen fish eggs so a ratio of one to one, hen to cock, is not necessarily required to ensure all egg deposits are fertilised..
Sea trout are known to move up and down in one night as they navigate the river.
 

Saint Andrews

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I remember in old Ribble report from the 90s of a gentleman fishing Calderfoot who sadly had a heart attack whilst fishing and when found there was ten pound sea trout still attached to his rod.
such a sad story but it does highlight how big Ribble sea trout were and maybe still are. 2005 saw possibly one of the greatest fly caught sea trout feats in the country with something like four sea trout all over 12lb - 18lb at Calderfoot.

It was a member of our club RAA who sadly passed whilst night fishing, found in the morning after his wife reported him missing. And he did have a 10lb seatrout dead in his net. A heart attack took him. The 2005 catches were not from Calderfoot or RAA waters, they were caught much lower down the river. I wont mention the captures name but wow what a few nights fishing, 5 seatrout between 12lbs and 22lbs, the best two being 18lbs and 22lbs...
 

Andrew B

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It was a member of our club RAA who sadly passed whilst night fishing, found in the morning after his wife reported him missing. And he did have a 10lb seatrout dead in his net. A heart attack took him. The 2005 catches were not from Calderfoot or RAA waters, they were caught much lower down the river. I wont mention the captures name but wow what a few nights fishing, 5 seatrout between 12lbs and 22lbs, the best two being 18lbs and 22lbs...
Many thanks for this reply. Fred’s done some reports over the years.
There’s been a few tragic incidents over the year to Ribble rods like the awful tale of the father and son who both drowned in Russia, just awful.
Re those run of fish in 2005 I don’t blame him one bit for keeping the place secret of where he caught them. To my knowledge I’ve never heard of anything like it even in Wales.. To hear it told this fellow really knew his s*** and told folk of an early run of humongous fish on the Ribble for years?
To put the work in over years of studying these ghosts and to know where they are, takes a lot of work to give up the whereabouts to potentially people with bad intentions.
I do remember him revealing the patterns though? Just a simple bare hook, gold bead n hackle.
 

Ribble Rod

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We are now reminiscing, and how time flies. It is going back to the August report in 2005 when I wrote in my T&S report about those big sea trout.
For what its worth I began writing the reports at the request of Sandy Lenventen back in 2004 and I have never missed a month and here we are sixteen years later and I'm still at it. Far too long I'm sure some will say. Just out of interest this is what I wrote about those sea trout. I have removed the angler's name

I’m beginning this month’s report with an angling achievement to surpass anything I have ever heard of before on the Ribble, or any other river for that matter, and one to make all serious sea trout anglers turn green with envy. Five magnificent double figured sea trout of 21 lbs, 18lbs two at 12 lbs and one of 10lbs were caught on fly in late June from the Lower Ribble by …………. fishing on dusk with a single handed rod, and all on single hooked flies he dressed himself. The 21.lb. fish has smashed the British record for a sea trout on fly currently standing at 20lb 12oz taken off the Welsh Dovey. I know that in the past the nets have taken fish up to about 19lbs but for...…….. these fish are what angling dreams are made of, the thought of playing and landing these fish into the dark is special in itself, I’m sure he will be pinching himself to believe it, absolutely brilliant for him.
 

Ribble Rod

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What month was it Fred?
It was the August issue of T&S in 2005 but the fish were caught in June. Its not really a secret, but I like to first have the anglers' permission to provide their names which I did when I contacted him on behalf of T&S. I have learnt this from the past when a couple of anglers contacted me after I gave their names in one of my reports. Some anglers just don't like publicity.
 

budge

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That's some catch you would probably need to go to Argentina or similar to stand a chance of repeating that. I used to do a bit of night seatrout fishing on the Ribble but I only had them up to around 4 lbs myself so a fish approaching double figures would be a dream come true.

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Occasional salmon fisher

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I seem to remember that a guest of a club member had a fish of around 21 lbs in the day on the lower river near Ribchester which they thought was a seatrout but scale samples indicated it might have been a salmon/seatrout hybrid ? From memory this was late 80s/early 90s.
 

liphook

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If you don't like publicity it makes perfect sense of course to have a two page spread in in T&S
 

seeking

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It was a member of our club RAA who sadly passed whilst night fishing, found in the morning after his wife reported him missing. And he did have a 10lb seatrout dead in his net. A heart attack took him. The 2005 catches were not from Calderfoot or RAA waters, they were caught much lower down the river. I wont mention the captures name but wow what a few nights fishing, 5 seatrout between 12lbs and 22lbs, the best two being 18lbs and 22lbs...

RIP

Quite a story. If I could chose a way to go, that would be right up there for me.

Cracking fish in the net, smile on the face, quickly, and by a beautiful flow.
 
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noeyedeer

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Just a heads up guys, it seems the “wild water swimmers” are making big plans to be dipping in prime Ribble catchment waters over the close season. Just discouraged one (friend of a friend) on FB who was suggesting they should try the location they had circled which I’m sure is familiar to members of a certain large club!
For starters those woods are out of bounds for the club due to landslips and danger from falling trees, which is the reason I gave them. Didn’t go into detail about the chance of getting caught on sunken trees, multiple snapped off barbel rigs, Tobys et cetera, not to mention also needing to run the gauntlet of the frisky bullocks in the field and no doubt the barbel anglers that will be lining the banks at this time of year!
From the nature of the discussions it’s clear they have no clue about private land, public access, riparian rights, close season, trout and salmon redds et cetera.
My view is to take an educational approach rather than getting into too much head-to-head like all too often with the canoeists.
Not sure what else can be done?


 

madcaster

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I remember the 2005 season on the Ribble it was all whispers on the seatrout forum that Hoppy use to run back then, we were too obsessed with the Cumbrian Esk and the Dovey.
My nights of creeping round riverbanks of far away lands are behind me thank goodness,
Always enjoyed Fred's report 👍

MADCASTER
 

budge

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Just a heads up guys, it seems the “wild water swimmers” are making big plans to be dipping in prime Ribble catchment waters over the close season. Just discouraged one (friend of a friend) on FB who was suggesting they should try the location they had circled which I’m sure is familiar to members of a certain large club!
For starters those woods are out of bounds for the club due to landslips and danger from falling trees, which is the reason I gave them. Didn’t go into detail about the chance of getting caught on sunken trees, multiple snapped off barbel rigs, Tobys et cetera, not to mention also needing to run the gauntlet of the frisky bullocks in the field and no doubt the barbel anglers that will be lining the banks at this time of year!
From the nature of the discussions it’s clear they have no clue about private land, public access, riparian rights, close season, trout and salmon redds et cetera.
My view is to take an educational approach rather than getting into too much head-to-head like all too often with the canoeists.
Not sure what else can be done?


Maybe best to let them get on with it ? They will more than likely know the laws but just choose to ignore them. They obviously don't know the geography of the river ? They will be doing as much crawling and scrambling as swimming unless they choose to do it in high water

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noeyedeer

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Maybe best to let them get on with it ? They will more than likely know the laws but just choose to ignore them. They obviously don't know the geography of the river ? They will be doing as much crawling and scrambling as swimming unless they choose to do it in high water

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Yes, it's interesting that some of the "swimmers" actually live in Ribchester but probably never tried to access the river except via local riverside car parks etc. They mean no harm - It's when they open up private online groups and get carried away discussing potential locations without a shred of knowledge.
Maybe once the Steers have given them a good chasing they may be less keen 🤣🤣

I've pulled a lot of lengths of snapped off strong braid out of that pool whilst spinning this season. People get snagged on the sunken trees. I wouldn't fancy getting any of that fast round my ankle in a strong flow either you're going under or your foot's coming off. 😱
 

seth

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There keen if they want to swim in a cocktail of slurry, sewage, and now Coronavirus as well, wouldn’t fancy a mouthful of that.
When I used to coarse fished in the Calder the keepnet used to get covered in a horrible grey slime, and it stunk to high heaven, not nice at all.
 

budge

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There keen if they want to swim in a cocktail of slurry, sewage, and now Coronavirus as well, wouldn’t fancy a mouthful of that.
When I used to coarse fished in the Calder the keepnet used to get covered in a horrible grey slime, and it stunk to high heaven, not nice at all.
When I was in my early teens I had a day swimming in the river Kent in Levens Park. Spent the next 3 days next to the toilet violently sick . Not something I would want to repeat. Good luck to anyone who risks it in the Ribble.

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Ribble Rod

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Diseased Hodder salmon.jpg
This is one of three diseased salmon found in the same area on the Hodder. The photo has been sent to the E.A for their attention. It would be useful to know if there are any others found elsewhere, not that we want to find any, but if a disease is spreading the E.A. should be aware of it. It was thought it could be a return of UDN but I don't think so. The fish that were infested by the UDN in the past had large patches of white fungus, or in the worst cased their whole body was white with the fungus. The other fish were, as far as I'm aware, also hens which had not spawned. Difficult to be certain from the photo if this fish had spawned or not, it could have done and the belly just sagging or it could be on the point of spawning. Apart from the belly the rest of the fish looks very kelt like. Without cutting open the fish to examine it, or feeling the fish itself I could not be sure. Others may have a different view.
 

budge

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This is one of three diseased salmon found in the same area on the Hodder. The photo has been sent to the E.A for their attention. It would be useful to know if there are any others found elsewhere, not that we want to find any, but if a disease is spreading the E.A. should be aware of it. It was thought it could be a return of UDN but I don't think so. The fish that were infested by the UDN in the past had large patches of white fungus, or in the worst cased their whole body was white with the fungus. The other fish were, as far as I'm aware, also hens which had not spawned. Difficult to be certain from the photo if this fish had spawned or not, it could have done and the belly just sagging or it could be on the point of spawning. Apart from the belly the rest of the fish looks very kelt like. Without cutting open the fish to examine it, or feeling the fish itself I could not be sure. Others may have a different view.
I have seen a couple of videos taken by coarse lads on the lower ribble showing salmon swimming in the margins with white fungus patches. Not sure if it was the same fish in both videos ? I thought it was pretty common to see fish in poor condition at this time of year due to spawning which is why I didn't think anything of it. Let's hope there's nothing serious lurking round the corner.

There's a photo of one posted that looks as though it's up Long Preston deeps.
 
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