Wye 2020

peterchilton

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yep, as I said an alternative universe where the stocking of 4,051,281 salmon since 1974 didn't take place, oddly the CEO did some of the stocking himself ...... his ones behaved as if they were the offspring of strays - all good I believe ........
 

rightangle

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I just wondered what had happened to the 370,000 stocked during the Lugg and Arrow project that was much vaunted at the time. That was until the Painscastle hatchery collapsed and then we were told that it was no good anyway because we couldn't be sure even one fish had returned. When you look back we've put up with some nonsense over the years.
 

peterchilton

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claims of 'the habitat work was starting to have an impact', are followed by the questions such as, well what happened to the fish that escaped the now removed nets and the paid off putchers? What happened to the fish that were no longer netted off the Irish coast and Greenland, Faroes etc?
 

Walleye

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Decent read here if you have not already seen it.


Interesting. Thanks for posting.

I guess my conclusion would be that bullshit box checking consultations put forward by taxpayer funded bodies regarding conservation measures are counter productive because a) they are bullshit(no evidence base), b) they are box checking exercise (no intent to consult), c) they create division and they harm conservation efforts in the long run (because everyone knows the consultations are bullshit box checking exercises in imposing politically motivated policies derived from internal processes guided by decision driven data making)

Ah well, at least they have formalised what we already kinda knew.
 

rightangle

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Having had a cursory glance {and that took long enough} one or two things occurred immediately. Firstly it's a triumph for management speak. So much so that a link to a "Plain Language Summary" is provided within the text. There is a suggestion that the outcome of the whole affair could only be , from what I gather, as far as the NRW was concerned, a binary decision . Hatcheries or no hatcheries. The paper talks of "2 discourse coalitions" {sides to you and me} but talks about a growing middle ground coalition. How does that work then? Do you have a hatchery but don't use it or only open it for half the week? I imagine the supposed "middle ground coalition" are those who think that hatcheries and environmental work go hand in hand . In which case that's every one I know who was on the pro hatchery "discourse coalition." It does mention that hatcheries could still be used for scientific study within the remit. What could be more scientific than the SNR project? At the hatchery we had a DNA profile of every fish used and knew which males had impregnated which females.

It appears that working against the retention of hatcheries was the claim that hatchery fish would out compete wild fish which is strange because we were always told that hatchery fish were weaker than wild fish and once again the "precautionary principle" was invoked. There was concern that if hatchery fish returned they would compromise the genetics of the "wild" fish and of course if there were no records of returning fish it would then prove that the scheme didn't work anyway. Hatcheries were linked to "scientific uncertainty" evidently. The report claims that in retrospect it would have been wiser to have let the SNR scheme run its allotted time when it could have provided some real scientific data.

Needless to say there is a graph or two. I wonder how different they would have looked had they been compiled using the now accepted anglers returns as opposed to the beat returns used hitherto.

Finally, and this is probably the real crux of the matter,the report states that "the handling and result of the policy change led to the alienation of some stakeholder groups." How's that for under statement. Is there anyone who thinks there was any intention of keeping hatcheries open?
 

Richardgw

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Couple of interesting clips here. Habitat improvements can work it seems - begs the question why not here?




This was the winner of the 2020 River Prise from 3 finalists.

Here are the other two.



Interesting River Rheidol project seems to be trying to mimic beavers!
 

fixedspool

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This was the winner of the 2020 River Prise from 3 finalists.

Here are the other two.



Interesting River Rheidol project seems to be trying to mimic beavers!
Must admit the last one didn't make much sense to me unless it relates to the river above the main Rheidol dam as it surely inhibits fish passage of sea trout and salmon?
 

peterchilton

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Having had a cursory glance {and that took long enough} one or two things occurred immediately. Firstly it's a triumph for management speak. So much so that a link to a "Plain Language Summary" is provided within the text. There is a suggestion that the outcome of the whole affair could only be , from what I gather, as far as the NRW was concerned, a binary decision . Hatcheries or no hatcheries. The paper talks of "2 discourse coalitions" {sides to you and me} but talks about a growing middle ground coalition. How does that work then? Do you have a hatchery but don't use it or only open it for half the week? I imagine the supposed "middle ground coalition" are those who think that hatcheries and environmental work go hand in hand . In which case that's every one I know who was on the pro hatchery "discourse coalition." It does mention that hatcheries could still be used for scientific study within the remit. What could be more scientific than the SNR project? At the hatchery we had a DNA profile of every fish used and knew which males had impregnated which females.

It appears that working against the retention of hatcheries was the claim that hatchery fish would out compete wild fish which is strange because we were always told that hatchery fish were weaker than wild fish and once again the "precautionary principle" was invoked. There was concern that if hatchery fish returned they would compromise the genetics of the "wild" fish and of course if there were no records of returning fish it would then prove that the scheme didn't work anyway. Hatcheries were linked to "scientific uncertainty" evidently. The report claims that in retrospect it would have been wiser to have let the SNR scheme run its allotted time when it could have provided some real scientific data.

Needless to say there is a graph or two. I wonder how different they would have looked had they been compiled using the now accepted anglers returns as opposed to the beat returns used hitherto.

Finally, and this is probably the real crux of the matter,the report states that "the handling and result of the policy change led to the alienation of some stakeholder groups." How's that for under statement. Is there anyone who thinks there was any intention of keeping hatcheries open?
Lets face it the last thing WUF and NRW ever wanted was real scientific data.
 

peterchilton

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Couple of problems with stocking in the Wye.

1. No one ever stocked enough

2. No genetic out crosses were used to simulate straying breeders.
 

peterchilton

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The nitty gritty is thus

in 1988 to get a reported rod catch of 6401 you would imagine that the run must have been 50,000 to 70,000 adults

in 2019 to get a WUF reported catch including recaptures of 348 must have a had a run between 2500 and 4,000

The local rivers trust have been in charge for all but the first 8 years, with much talk of habitat work and liming and weir removal etc - what have they achieved?
 

OURTREV

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The nitty gritty is thus

in 1988 to get a reported rod catch of 6401 you would imagine that the run must have been 50,000 to 70,000 adults

in 2019 to get a WUF reported catch including recaptures of 348 must have a had a run between 2500 and 4,000

The local rivers trust have been in charge for all but the first 8 years, with much talk of habitat work and liming and weir removal etc - what have they achieved?
Well they have singlehandedly kept this thread on the Forum going for a start! :giggle:
 

rightangle

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One thing that the BES report does make clear is that one side of the "discourse coalition" had the use of the main stream media whereas the other side felt it could only resort to the use of sites like this one [basically talking to ourselves] to air its views. This becomes apparent if one follows the "data source" link provided. There one finds a large number of quotes from articles from the BBC, BBC Wales, The Independent, the Guardian and a number of local newspapers. In almost all these incidents it's not long before these articles become quotes from "the CEO of the Wye and Usk Foundation" which is fair enough. Where as an outsider would one go for info on the Wye but to the man who had assumed responsibility? The trouble was the other side of the discourse coalition wasn't even being asked what it thought. Let's face it the respective journalists {and I use the term loosely} most probably didn't even know there was another side to the argument. In fact it would not come as a surprise if it was rather than the media approaching the establishment for a story what was actually the establishment approaching the media with its own promotional material. And that is what the Foundation was good at. Self promotion.

If you can be bothered to trace the provided data source link you find what are classic bu****it quotes. The thing is you've got to be in the know to recognize it as such. Would any journalist query it? My favourite is that the Lugg and Arrow project could provide between three and four thousand extra fish to the annual run. That was presumably just before we were told that we don't believe stocking works anyway and of the 370,000 stocked in the Lugg and Arrow we can't be sure even one returned.
 

OURTREV

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Where as an outsider would one go for info on the Wye but to the man who had assumed responsibility? The trouble was the other side of the discourse coalition wasn't even being asked what it thought. Let's face it the respective journalists {and I use the term loosely} most probably didn't even know there was another side to the argument. In fact it would not come as a surprise if it was rather than the media approaching the establishment for a story what was actually the establishment approaching the media with its own promotional material. And that is what the Foundation was good at. Self promotion.

If you can be bothered to trace the provided data source link you find what are classic bu****it quotes. The thing is you've got to be in the know to recognize it as such. Would any journalist query it?
It is not possible to be more right than you in my opinion.

Anything you see on the box or in the news or in magazines such as T&S or the Field, programmes you watch on journeys down the Wye or fishing on the Wye or whatever. The lazy sods go straight for the easy but slick option at WUF. If the programme producers are not talking to WUF they will be talking to or filming on one of the stretches promoted by WUF. Like you say there are other options but things may not be as slick and polished at say Hereford Club or Wye Salmon Assoc or Ross AC.
I would suggest that the media in whatever form will always go for the easy route where most of the work has been done. Can't see that changing soon unless someone else can match the slickness.. ;)
 

Andrew B

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Restoring habitat would probably be enough if we didn’t have all the other undoubted problems that salmon face. Avian predators, pollution, redd washout from yearly floods and survival at sea. We have the hatcheries and given the data we have, wouldn’t it be worth just trying to seed the streams with eyed ova or something for a period of years just to see if it would go in hand with habitat restoration?
They’ll probably start rearing goosanders before the above though?
 

peterchilton

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But of course we do have them (the other problems) and people knew about them and the habitat gardening has been tried for 20 years and has failed to produce a meaningful difference. In fact considering the removal of nets and the reduction in poaching and 100% catch and release its more likely that the run has dropped even more than we think (and we think its a lot). People close to the river know this, but further afield WUF have spread the seed of success and people actually believe it (why wouldn't you).
 

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I'm looking through Ross AC's old records for the 1980's to see if I can match up the old catches and peg numbers to locations on the fishery as it is now.
I know it is unlikely that we can raise our catch numbers by much but salmon are likely to still use the same lies now as they did in the 1980's so if we can identify these spots and clear the bank to fish them we may be in with a chance. I contacted the old Match Secretary in the days when the Wye at Ross had many fishing matches held on it's prolific waters, in the days when roach, chub and dace held sway and barbel were rare creatures. The Match Sec was very helpful and many locations only known by a peg number were re-identified. When the rules were changed to ban worm as bait in early 2000's the Salmon Membership at the Ross Club was wiped out at a stroke and water that had been easy to fish with relatively clear banks became quickly overgrown but the Membership is again healthy and the fishery is gradually rising from the ashes again with a 5 year average for 2021 of 17.
So the keen stalwarts of the salmon membership at the Club have worked hard to really make a difference for 2021 including clearing one section of bankside willows which used to produce good number of salmon throughout the season. My next task is to collate all the catches and attribute them to the refound locations to give us an idea of where to cast our line!
20201110_111707.jpg


Like everywhere on the Wye this year Covid took it's toll on fishing opportunities and our fishing at Ross was no exception but ever the optimist 2021 is going to be a good maybe a great year! :ROFLMAO:
In days gone by our waters at Ross was considered mainly worm country and that is obvious by looking at the old records. I singled out 1988 as a fairly typical year for the 1980's. During that year we had 140 salmon and as far as I can see from the records not a single one was returned! of the 140 fish only 10 were caught on spinner or fly so 130 were caught on bait and that was mainly worm with a sprinkling of shrimp. I also noted that as many as 8 or one time 10 salmon were caught on one day and the number of times individual caught 4 or 5 fish was not uncommon.
I've attached a photo of two pages of the 1988 record book if anyone is interested. Historical stuff and quite interesting.
Trev.
20201202_175358.jpg
 
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fixedspool

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I'm looking through Ross AC's old records for the 1980's to see if I can match up the old catches and peg numbers to locations on the fishery as it is now.
I know it is unlikely that we can raise our catch numbers by much but salmon are likely to still use the same lies now as they did in the 1980's so if we can identify these spots and clear the bank to fish them we may be in with a chance. I contacted the old Match Secretary in the days when the Wye at Ross had many fishing matches held on it's prolific waters, in the days when roach, chub and dace held sway and barbel were rare creatures. The Match Sec was very helpful and many locations only known by a peg number were re-identified. When the rules were changed to ban worm as bait in early 2000's the Salmon Membership at the Ross Club was wiped out at a stroke and water that had been easy to fish with relatively clear banks became quickly overgrown but the Membership is again healthy and the fishery is gradually rising from the ashes again with a 5 year average for 2021 of 17.
So the keen stalwarts of the salmon membership at the Club have worked hard to really make a difference for 2021 including clearing one section of bankside willows which used to produce good number of salmon throughout the season. My next task is to collate all the catches and attribute them to the refound locations to give us an idea of where to cast our line!
View attachment 53389


Like everywhere on the Wye this year Covid took it's toll on fishing opportunities and our fishing at Ross was no exception but ever the optimist 2021 is going to be a good maybe a great year! :ROFLMAO:
In days gone by our waters at Ross was considered mainly worm country and that is obvious by looking at the old records. I singled out 1988 as a fairly typical year for the 1980's. During that year we had 140 salmon and as far as I can see from the records not a single one was returned! of the 140 fish only 10 were caught on spinner or fly so 130 were caught on bait and that was mainly worm with a sprinkling of shrimp. I also noted that as many as 8 or one time 10 salmon were caught on one day and the number of times individual caught 4 or 5 fish was not uncommon.
I've attached a photo of two pages of the 1988 record book if anyone is interested. Historical stuff and quite interesting.
Trev.
View attachment 53390


Well Trevor I wouldn't say that 1988 was really a typical year of the Wye Catches in the 1980s. It was far and and away better than any of the years in that decade and one I remember fondly. We have never even approached that years total since and as things are at present seems we might never do so again. Funny thing was the spring run was not great that year, especially for upstream beats but from early June runs of 2sw fish and then grilse more than made up for it. There was good water all year helped by regular release from the Elan valley dams where they were doing maintainance work and needed to keep levels low so at times the river gauges stayed steady for a week at a time. Every small rise saw more fish arrive. The beat I fished, the Nyth, had 206 that year with a mix of methods too. I fished a lot on my own that year as my employer was ill and not as many guest fished with the Lodge largely unoccupied. I was lucky and had 162 of those fish (I think) All hen fish were returned after the end of August. Won't ever see the likes of that again more's the pity.
 
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tenet

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I fished Lower Symonds Yat from the late 70's thru most of the 80's and the start of the bait season (was it April) was eagerly awaited. The hunt for worms had me scouring Minchinhampton Common during and after rain in the darkness for lobworms hoping not to get a handful of dog Shiite as these were the days pre doggy poo bags. Had quite a few to the wrigglers and also the spun prawn, always off a multiplier. Ron Burford (RIP) the ghillie was quite vocal against fixed spool reels but like most of the Wye ghillies knew how to twinkle out a fish or two.
My avatars shows a fine Spring fish taken below Martin's Island on a yellow belly circa 1980.
 
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