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Martin James award-winning fisherman consultant,broadcaster,writer


Wye and Usk Foundation

It's been very encouraging to see the good numbers of salmon seen spawning throughout the Wye and Usk systems in the last couple of months. The rainfall in late October and November brought salmon up the Wye in good numbers. After a slow start, the spawning streams have now been well used with some having more redds than in over a decade (e.g. the Duhonw & Sgithwen). Fish have penetrated right to the top of the system with redds found further upstream than for some 25 years. Likewise, trout spawning has been truly excellent in all the places we would expect it to be.

The Usk has also seen good salmon penetration. A WUF Habitat Team working on the Grwyne Fawr witnessed fish swimming past and spawning along side them in December. Spawning has occurred along way up several other Usk tributaries, including the Senny, Ysgir & fact, just about everywhere we've looked! Just as encouraging were the appearance of redds above newly created fish passes on the Rhiangoll and Crawnon. All-in-all, this bodes very well for the future!

Water levels are high today after the recent snow and rain. This has followed a cold, dry period that saw the river dropping to something like summer levels. Those that braved the conditions and ventured out during this time enjoyed some good winter grayling sport on both the fly and trotted maggot. Grayling tend to shoal up at this time of year meaning that they can be quite difficult to locate. Once you do find them, however..... The fishing can be good.

The Wye and Usk Foundation say, a big thank you to all that have supported them in 2004. Your donations, fishing effort and attendance to Foundation events have all helped enormously in our efforts to restore and protect these important rivers. We are greatly encouraged by the progress the projects have made in 2005 and by the promising increases in catches in both rivers. There is still some way to go, however, and we hope that we can call on your support again in 2005. One of the first ways of doing so would be to buy your 2005 EA rod licence through the Booking Office! (01982 551 520)

Martin James Fishing