SALMON catches in Scotland last year were the tenth highest ever recorded, according to provisional statistics published today today by Scotland’s Chief Statistician
The total reported rod catch of salmon, both retained and released, on Scotland’s rivers was 84,950, representing 94 per cent of the previous 5-year average.
But the proportion of the rod catch released back into the rivers by anglers was the highest reported since the catch and release policy began on a voluntary basis in 1994. In 2012, 91 per cent of rod caught spring salmon was released, as was 74 per cent of the annual rod catch.
The report also states: “Catch and effort for both fixed engine and net and coble fisheries remain at historically low levels. The reported catch in each fishery was 12,580 and 3,646 salmon.”
Sea trout catches on Scotland’s rivers were the fifth lowest since records began in 1952. The total number of sea trout both retained and release by anglers was 21,691.
The report states: “There are clear differences among geographic regions in the relative strength of the 2012 rod catch. All mainland regions in the west of Scotland reported catches which were within the lowest ten recorded for their region over the period 1952 to 2012.
“The reported catch in Moray Firth and North east regions were, similarly, the lowest and fourth lowest respectively over the same period. Catches in the East and North regions in 2012 were, on the other hand, both among the top ten catches recorded within their respective regions, while the catch recorded in the Outer Hebrides was close to the mid-point in the time series.
“The proportion of the total rod catch accounted for by catch and release remains among the highest reported since records began in 1994 and accounted for 70 per cent of the catch in 2012.”