ANGLERS PLEASE NOTE: For season 2017 the Scottish Government has introduced legislation which, for conservation purposes, makes it illegal for anglers to kill any salmon
& grilse anywhere on the Ness System between 15th January and 30th June. From 1st July to 15th October only one cock fish weighing 8 pounds (69cm/27 inches) or less may
be retained per angler per week, with a maximum of two being retained per angler per season.
All hen fish of any size and all cock fish over 8 pounds (69cm/27 inches) must be released. All coloured and unseasonable fish must also be released.
During the Category 3 period, 15th January to 30th June, an angler caught in possession of a dead salmon or grilse faces prosecution which may result in a criminal conviction.
3. Fishing Methods
3.1 Fishing from bridges, abutments or boats, and bait fishing with natural shrimp or prawn (and the possession, on the river bank, of these baits and associated tackle), are strictly prohibited. The use of gaffs, tailers and knotted mesh nets is prohibited under Scottish law.
3.2 Worm fishing is permitted between March 15 and September 30.
4. Order of Fishing
4.1 Anglers arriving at either side of a beat will begin fishing, in order of arrival, at a beat post and move down two yards at every cast until either terminating fishing or reaching the next beat post. When an angler has moved down 30 yards, the next angler will follow. On reaching the next beat post, an angler must give up his place and take his turn behind those waiting.
4.2 An angler at a beat post who is not ready to fish will lose his turn and take next place.
4.3 A waiting angler will not commence fishing if an upstream angler is within 30 yards of the beat post. He must wait until the other angler reaches the post and leaves the water.
4.4 After landing a salmon or grilse, an angler must leave the water and take his place behind those waiting. An angler who loses a fish may continue fishing.
5. Permit holders are required to submit a return of their catches, including released fish and nil returns. Returns must be received by the secretary no later than October 23. Failure to comply will mean automatic suspension.
6. Trout Fishing
6.1 All of the above rules apply to trout fishing, with the exception of 4.4 and 5.2.
All members and visitors must submit a return of their catches, showing the number and weight (lbs) of fish caught and kept, and fish caught and released, and whether they are salmon, grilse or sea trout. All returns, including nil returns, must be submitted to Alan Scott, Secretary, Inverness Angling Club, 24 Merlin Crescent, Inverness IV2 3TE no later than October 23 each year.
NESS DISTRICT SALMON FISHERY BOARD CONSERVATION POLICY
For the 2017 salmon fishing season, Grade 3 status (mandatory catch and release) will be in force across the Ness district until the 30th June. This aims to protect the vulnerable spring salmon and early running grilse destined for the River Moriston Special Area of Conservation (SAC).
From 1st July it will remain mandatory, that all fish caught in the Moriston SAC must be released, but the wider Ness district will be uplifted to Grade 2 status, allowing a limited number of fish to be caught and retained. This is subject to adherence of our 2017 Salmon Conservation Policy (see below), which has been approved by the Scottish Government and is designed to meet the requirement for reduced exploitation on Grade 2 systems.
Conservation Policy - River Moriston SAC (Grade 3 Conservation Status)
15th January to 15th October
Mandatory catch and release of salmon will be in force across the River Moriston SAC throughout the 2017 salmon fishing season. Exploitation of the River Moriston stock has been deemed to be unsustainable and so mandatory catch and release has been implemented.
Any salmon caught, including any dead or bleeding fish, must be returned to the water with the least possible harm.
Restrictions on baits and Lures
The River Ness Salmon Fishery District (Baits and Lures)
Regulations 2007 prohibits the use of prawns and shrimp throughout the Ness district and worms for salmon and sea trout above Dochfour Weir (including the Moriston).
Any spinning lure or plug should have only one hook no bigger than size 6. Preferably all hooks should be single, barbless or crimped
Ness District (Excluding the River Moriston SAC)
15th January to 30th June (Grade 3 Conservation Status)
Mandatory catch and release of salmon will be in force across the Ness District from the 15th January to 30th June. Salmon destined for the River Moriston SAC will pass through, and be available for capture/killing in the wider district. Evidence suggests that the majority of fresh run Moriston fish will have entered the system by the 30th June. Salmon should not be retained anywhere in the ness district before 1st July to ensure protection of the Moriston stock. Anglers should not fish with worms anywhere in the district while mandatory catch and release is in force. A high proportion of fish caught using this method are deeply hooked, reducing their chances of survival. Any spinning lure or plug should have only one hook no bigger than size 6. Preferably all hooks should be single, barbless or crimped.
1st July to 15th October (Grade 2 Conservation Status)
All hen fish of any size and all cock fish over 8 pounds (69cm/27 inches) must be released. Furthermore:
-Only one cock fish weighing 8 pounds (69cm/27 inches) or less may be retained per angler per week, with a maximum of two per season; and
-All coloured and unseasonable fish must be released, providing protection for Moriston SAC fish throughout the season.
-Guidance on the sex and condition of fish provided overleaf - IF IN DOUBT PLEASE RELEASE THE FISH. Anglers should not fish with worm anywhere in the district after the 31st August. A large proportion of fish captured after this date are coloured. Any spinning lure or plug should have only one hook no bigger than size 6. Preferably all hooks should be single, barbless or crimped.