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(Last updated: Wednesday 25th May)
Spring salmon fishing on the Tay in Perthshire is now in mid-May after another successful April equaling last year's totals. The river has fallen back to summer levels giving excellent conditions for fishing plus warming temperatures are seeing catches improving rapidly. Expectation is high on the river for 2016 with now well over 1000 fish recorded so far and after successful springs in 2015, 2014 and 2013 plus hopefully settled weather will continue with an improving run in May to give everyone a chance of landing a spring “Bar of Silver”.
Spring salmon were landed throughout last week with better weather and catches have spread with higher river temperatures. It was another productive week with over 100 fish landed and the biggest one recorded was 22 pounds from Cargill. Spring is disappearing but improving runs are coming into the river and better weather is making fishing easier with lower water last week and a bit of fresh water at the weekend may encoura more fish to run the river as the run strengthens. The spring fish that have been caught so far have been superb quality and of a good size overall.
On the nature front the first Sand Martins, Swifts and Swallows have arrived, Ospreys are being seen, Ducks have their first broods of young and Sand Pipers are on the river banks. Blue bells a coming out in the woods and the Loopins are starting to bloom, it is truly magical to be salmon fishing in Perthshire on the banks of the silvery Tay.
The majority of the salmon have been caught in the lower river in early spring, which is understandable with the cold conditions but that has changed with warmer water allowing fish to run further giving improving results up the river including odd fish from Loch Tay and Loch Faskally now as fish start to spread in the system. Recently the boats come off the lower river below Stanley with summer bank fishing now available. The middle river is now the barometer for the runs as water temperatures rise to the mid 50's.
This past week saw a few fish from the lower river scattered throughout the beats with Islamouth area proving the best beat as fish hesitate at the mouth of the Isla. The beats at Stanley and below are seeing limited sport but the small spate at the weekend may just spice things up by encouraging Sea Trout into the river. Benchil saw action on Saturday with Davie Grant landing a 10 pounds fish from the Little Shot. The warmer water is seeing fish shoot through the lower beats with Stobhall and Taymount catching odd fish between them. The lower water levels are benefiting Ballathie and Cargill with 11 fish recorded in the area. On Ballathie Dennis Mortram and Neil Barcock had good success on the fly with fish up to 11 pounds. On Cargill Peter Sheard caught his first ever salmon on the fly. Then Mark Schofield caught a superb 22 pounds fish as Keith Schofield's party enjoyed a good week on the beat. Islamouth had a superb week with 33 salmon caught all on the fly. Richard Collett and Angus Johnson's parties had a very enjoyable week with supreme sport. Meikleour and Upper Islamouth had a quieter week with just a single fish.
The middle river is fairing much better with rising river temperatures over recent weeks. Kercock had 7 in the week with some outstanding fish being caught on the beat recently. The Murthly and Glendelvine beats had a quieter week but still with consistent catches with 12 between them. On Delvine and Burnbane a couple of fish came off on the same day. John Ogden from the USA caught a 7 pounds fish and John Cranston landed one at 9 pounds. On Newtyle 4 fish were landed in the week with Jon Amos catching a couple on Thursday evening. Dunkeld House had a quiet week with 3 fish. Dalmarnoch continue to do well with 7 fish caught. The beat is seeing a fair bit of action with James Creany landing an outstanding 14 pounds fish on the fly. 3 were landed on the beat on Wednesday with Will Park and Willie Paton being successful catching fish up to 12 pounds. Later in the week Michael Turner was successful on the fly from Clachantaggart. Dalguise had one in the week with Andrew Sutherland catching a 12 pounds fish from Calum's Corner on a Flying C. Kinnaird had a good week with 10 fish off the beats.
The Tummel is continuing to see sport from the Port-na-Craig beat administered by Pitlochry Angling Club with 3 landed last week and there are now 1700 fish through the Dam resulting in fish being recorded in
Loch Faskally. It was a much quieter week at the Dam with only fish caught on Monday. Alun Williams, Steve Watt and Davie Stewart all caught fish on the fly up to 13 pounds but then the rest of the week was
fruitless as fish raced through the dam at over 100 a day. Loch Faskally saw a quieter week as well with only 3 fish.
If you have any news or pictures of catches or experiences on the Tay and you would like to share them please email me on
firstname.lastname@example.org to be included in the reports.
The upper river is seeing steady sport with fish caught on Fyndynate and the Farleyer beats.
The Isla are seeing salmon run up the river and progressing to the Ericht with 3 fish being reported last week from Keithick Mains and the lower Ericht.
Fish have been reported running the Lyon as well but low water levels have curtailed sport. No news from that part of the river last week.
The Spring Salmon fishing season is now in May and expectation remains very high after previous good springs. Last week's catches were again heartening and more fish are running with warmer weather. Let us hope this is a sign of an upturn in catches as last May proved. It has been a reasonable start with well over 1000 fish recorded so let us hope the season lives up to every one's expectations over the coming weeks and months. Tight lines!