2018 SALMON & SEA TROUT CONSERVATION POLICY
Since March 2016 new legislation governing the taking of salmon has come into force across Scotland and requires all rivers to protect the conservation status of salmon. In September 2017 the Scottish Government categorised the Don as a Category 3 river and therefore all salmon must be returned throughout the 2018 season.
A. It is a criminal offence to retain a salmon or grilse throughout the whole of the angling season. By law any salmon or grilse that is caught must be returned to the river, whether dead or alive.
B. It is illegal to sell rod caught wild salmon or sea trout, or use knotted nets, tailers or gaffs.
C. It is a legal requirement that proprietors must report catches, so all anglers in turn must make a report of catches to the beat proprietor. Failure to report catches could influence the future category status of the river.
D. Anglers are encouraged to practice 100% catch and release for the entire season for sea trout and finnock.
E. Anglers should be encouraged to fly fish throughout the river catchment.
F. It is recommended that all hooks should be barbless or crimped. No treble hooks should be used.
G. Spinning is permitted at the beat's discretion. No treble or barbed hooks to be used.
H. It is recommended that bait fishing, using the worm only, is only permitted for junior anglers at the beats' discretion. There should be no worming in October. Only circle hooks should be used.
I. Fish returned to the water should be handled carefully with wetted hands and held facing upstream until sufficiently recovered to swim free. Fish should remain in the water at all times.
J. All anglers are requested to read and act upon the biosecurity measures in place for each beat to prevent the introduction of Gyrodactylus salaris and other diseases to the Don. This will involve the disinfection of waders and landing nets prior to fishing. It may be necessary to check whether you will be required to disinfect the equipment prior to arrival.
K. Any pink salmon that are caught should be retained and the River Office informed on the 24 hour number: 01467 642121
For guidelines on how to safely release fish or information on fish stocks, please visit our website: www.riverdon.org.uk