Tweed Spring Numbers Better Than Predictions – But Catches Patchy
2017 produced a Spring rod catch of 1,843* Salmon, 600 less than last season. The river was unseasonably low and dry until mid June and, whilst some fish were caught in the early months, numbers did not really pick up until late June. Catches were mainly in the lower river, making June 2017 the highest June catch in the last five years (681), and larger than the current five-year average of 550. Although catches were low until May, there were some very large Springers reported in the early part of the season – the biggest of which topped 30lbs.
The 2017 five-year average dropped by 9% on the previous season. Lower Tweed caught 1,140 fish (1,526 in 2016), the five-year average in that area being 1,204, with the 2014 Spring being poorer than this season when 767 fish were caught. Middle Tweed caught 591 fish (685 in 2016), a shade under the lowest figure in its current five-year average of 601. Whilst 2014 was responsible for the smallest catch over the last five years in Lower Tweed (767), it was also responsible for the highest in recent years on Middle Tweed (809). The tributaries caught very few fish overall.
The Tweed has a catch and release policy for Spring Salmon for conservation and in accordance with good management practice.
The graph overleaf shows the rod catch to the end of June for those beats that have been in the Scheme since its inception in 1998, for comparison. The 2017 Spring catch for those beats amounted to 1,759 Salmon. (2,298 in 2016), a drop of 30.50%.