New angling bylaws have been introduced affecting the Corrib catchment area in Galway and Mayo.
The bylaws govern fishing regulations on the Abbert and Grange rivers, the River Clare, and the Cong River and Canal.
Minister with responsibility for Inland Fisheries and Galway West TD Seán Kyne signed off on the new bylaws this week.
Commenting on the new bylaws Minister Kyne said, “The bye-laws, which have been requested by local angling clubs, concern the Abbert and Grange Rivers, the Clare River and the Cong River and Canal, reflect the support of the clubs for the conservation imperative and the sustainable management of the local fisheries resource.”
The Abbert and Grange rivers have had the closed season for all angling extended by two months to cover the period from September 1 to March 31 annually.
This extension was made at the request of angling clubs on the Clare river system to conserve fish stocks.
Both rivers contribute significantly to brown trout stocks in the River Clare and on Lough Corrib.
The extended closed season will offer more protection for those trout while they are spawning.
On the River, from Daly’s bridge in Corrandrum to a point 300m upstream of the footbridge at Anbally in the townlands of Anbally and Turloughmartin in Galway, all legal angling methods are now allowed.
Previously this section of the river was restricted to fly-fishing. The new regulation, also made at the request of the local angling club, brings it in line with the rest of the River Clare.
The Cong River and Canal have had their upstream boundary between Lough Mask and the canal, and downstream boundary between Lough Corrib and the river, more clearly defined.
The purpose of this clarification is to make it easier to enforce legislation governing the opening seasons for trout and salmon on the Cong River/Canal, as they differ from the seasons on Loughs Mask and Corrib for the same species.
The new bylaw will afford greater protection for the prized ferox trout which is also known to spawn on the Cong River/Canal.
Dr. Ciaran Byrne, CEO of Inland Fisheries Ireland, said: “We welcome the introduction of these bye-laws in Galway and Mayo which will help us to enforce relevant legislation and enhance the resource in the long term.
“The introductions of these bye-laws follow public consultations whereby stakeholders were invited to input their views and insights into the proposed new regulations.”
“Inland Fisheries Ireland’s Fisheries Officers will now protect these rivers in line with the new laws in place,” he concluded.
Anglers on the affected waterways can familiarise themselves with the new bylaws at www.fisheriesireland.ie.