Belfast Telegraph

Trout for the count as over 600 are landed at Birchwood

Rod and Line

By Vic Thomas

A mixed bag of weather at the Birchwood Fishery, Drumquin failed to deter a great turnout of anglers who banked a total of 619 trout over the past week at this terrific venue!

There was a tie this week for top rod with Keith Kilburn and Sean Wallace both landing superb catches of 27 fish. The two lads also grassed the two biggest fish of the week with Sean taking one at 9lbs and Keith, not far behind, with a trout of 8lb 13ozs.

Other anglers who bagged good catches included Jason McClean with 21 fish, Matt McClean, with 20, and Jimmy Kelly and Alban Norrby who both tempted 19.

Eamon McGee also landed 19 trout with a best fish of 7lbs and Paddy Donnelly banked 17.

A good number of anglers also filled their bag limits on the Bait Lake where it was great to see so many young ones like Anna and Jack Speer from Killen, Co Tyrone, getting hooked on the sport of angling.

  • Warmer temperatures at the start of the week at the Craigmore Fishery, Randalstown, helped the fishing with anglers catching some great bags of trout.

Billy Hazlett grassed 26x on mixed lures; David Moore landed 23 on black lures; Gary Crouthers tempted 22 on Blobs and Stephen Best banked 38 eight during two sessions casting Spiders and Olive Damsels.

Tommy Wharry bagged 29 on a red Diawl Bach and Cats Whiskers; Alan Temple also landed 20 on Damsel Nymphs and Jim Simpson caught 11 on pink Bloodworm and orange bead Damsel patterns.

Robert Paul tempted 14 including one at 6lbs and a brace of five pounders on blue Damsels; Mark Bryans was also amongst the biggies landing one at 9lbs and a brace at 6lbs, each on nymphs and buzzers and Jason Kyle bagged 18 to 5lbs on lures. Stewart McMurran took 11 to 4lbs plus; Peter Alexander banked 13 to 7lbs; Davy McQuillan grassed eight to almost 9lbs on green Bloodworm and a green and white lure and Rab McFarland also had eight on white Minkies.

Jim Patterson caught six including a nice brace at 5lb 8ozs and 4lb 8ozs; John Dixon banked seven with one at 6lbs and another at 7lbs on a black Midge pattern and Stewart Lyness bagged a beauty at 8lbs on a black Fritz!

  • Despite a severe frost the night before, 32 anglers fished the final independent qualifier for the 2017 National Pike Championships on a lake venue near Bawnboy, Co Cavan.

Fishing was slow due to the low temperature but still a reasonable total of 39 pike to 14lbs were landed.

Winner on the day, Anthony McCabe, ledger fished two rods to land six pike for a weight of 47lb 8ozs. Included in his catch was a brace of nice double figure pike including, the 14 pounder and another at 12lbs.

The other six anglers who also qualified for the grand final in April were Andrius Kryzevicius, four pike for 14lb 12ozs; Paul Comiskey, three for 14lb 6ozs; Joe Coleman, three for 11lb 15ozs; John Woods, two for 10lb 8ozs; Ian McGruer, two for 9lb 13ozs and Ray Leonard with two for 7lb 10ozs.

  • Three new faces feature on the National Coarse Fishing Federation of Ireland team for the 2017 FIPS-ed Feeder World Championships to be held in Portugal this June.

New boys Nick Howell (Daiwa), Johnny McKinley, (Lurgan CAC) and Rimantas Kondrackas (Go & Catch AC) join Michael Buchwalder (Preston Innovations), Cathal Hughes (Daiwa/Bait-Tech) and and Paul Leese (Kingfisher AC).

Team manager Brenton Sweeney said: "In the last three years Ireland has achieved a team silver medal and four section wins and are currently ranked 12th in the world. It has always been my ambition to introduce younger members to the squad and it's great to start my second term by welcoming Johnny and Rimantas along with Nick who brings extensive knowledge of international championships."

Philip Jackson and Paul Heaney, both from Lurgan CAC, will provide team support in Portugal with Philip as assistant manager.

Belfast Telegraph

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