The grayling is not an indigenous species to Tweed but was introduced in the late 1800s, and they now flourish on the main stem of the system and many of the tributaries. However, until recently grayling fishing on Tweed and its tributaries was a well kept secret, known only to the local trout anglers who wanted to extend their fishing season through the winter months.
Thanks to an enlightened view taken by many of the riparian owners and good coverage in a number of game angling magazines in recent years, there has been a marked increase in anglers fishing for 'The Lady of the Stream' and the grayling has now become a valued sporting game fish after the trout season has ended.
When to fish for grayling
Despite being a salmonid the grayling does not share the same spawning time as other species within this group. Whereas salmon and trout spawn in the winter months, the grayling does not spawn until mid to late April. The grayling season starts around mid June but considering that the fish may still be recovering from spawning any that are caught whilst the angler is trout fishing should be carefully returned. By the summer the fish will have returned to full fitness and shoals of small fish at around the 1lb mark can be found in many areas of the system. Once a shoal is located the fish will rise to the dry fly but most are taken on a weighted nymph fished upstream.
Although many grayling are caught during the summer months using traditional methods, a different approach has gained popularity over the last few years and grayling anglers now predominantly use the Czech nymph style of fishing with extremely good results.
As the season progresses the grayling reaches peak fitness during the colder months of November through to January and at this time they tend to form tight shoals and a fair amount of searching will be required to locate them, however, once found, anglers can expect sport to be fast and furious as catches of a dozen or more are not uncommon.
At this time anglers should adhere to the Tweed Angling Code for Grayling in respect of other species that will be in the process of spawning.
Availability of permits
Anglers are advised to use the grayling option on the find fishing
page to see the rods and areas available. At present There is a number of trout fishing associations that do not avail themselves of the service that FishTweed provides, however, details of all the associations in the Tweed valley can be found on the club waters
Most angling associations allow grayling fishing on their trout permit and some associations and proprietors also allow grayling fishing on their beats in the winter, however, there are rules/regulations set out by the River Tweed Commissioners.