Temperatures Hit Summer Levels

In just a few weeks we have gone from ice cakes on the river banks to high summer water temperatures in some places. As everyone is aware, the combination of warmer temperatures and the decreased dissolved oxygen levels  mean that Atlantic salmon are easily stressed when they are angled.

As water temperatures rise, play the fish for shorter periods of time, and be more careful about keeping the fish in the water afterwards. Take your photos with it in the water, with a flow over the gills.

New Brunswick

Miramichi – On the Miramichi, where the water temperatures have risen quickly. Conceivably there could be a DFO restriction coming on angling due to the temperatures. But that may depend on the exact path of the tropical storm Arthur that will be passing across Nova Scotia and New Brunswick on Sunday before heading towards central Newfoundland.

Tropical Storm Arthur, with predicted path and times as of July 2.

Tropical Storm Arthur, with predicted path and times as of July 2.

The tropical storm may well bring lower water temperatures and higher water levels.

Fishing Dennis Pool on the Little Southwest Miramichi late last week. (Photo Holly Johnson)

Fishing Dennis Pool on the Little Southwest Miramichi late last week. (Photo Holly Johnson)

All accounts on the Miramichi talk about the Atlantic salmon fishing being slow this week.

Restigouche – At Larry’s Gulch the salmon angling is considered slow, and water temperatures are creeping up towards 70 F. Nevertheless they celebrated July 1 with two large salmon angled – one 15 lb., the other 21 lb.

In June Larry’s Gulch began angling on June 4, and in the month had 23 large salmon and 2 grilse. In comparison, Larry’s Gulch had 64 large salmon and 7 grilse in June; and in 2012 had 42 large salmon and 4 grilse.

Newfoundland

Northern Peninsula Rivers

ASF’s Director of Newfoundland and Labrador programs just completed a trip up the Northern Peninsula and overall the returns have been low and the angling slow.

Castor River on the weekend (photo Don Ivany/ASF)

Castor River on the weekend (photo Don Ivany/ASF)

The Castor River did have good signs of Atlantic salmon. However Portland Creek had high water levels, and had only one angler on the the lower section of the river.

Torrent River was also high, with only a few Atlantic salmon in the lower river. Big East River (at Hawke’s Bay) was a little low and had only a few fish.  The St. Genevieve was very high, with no anglers on it.

Baker's Brook, Gros Morne National Park, June 28, 2014 (photo Don Ivany/ASF)

Baker’s Brook, Gros Morne National Park, June 28, 2014 (photo Don Ivany/ASF)

East Brook and Bakers Brook in Gros Morne National Park had decent water but few anglers and very few fish.

The lowermost section of Portland Creek, famous for its association with Lee Wulff.  Taken June 28. (photo Don Ivany/ASF)

The lowermost section of Portland Creek, famous for its association with Lee Wulff. Taken June 28. (photo Don Ivany/ASF)

Humber – Numbers of Atlantic salmon at Big Falls on the Humber have increased significantly, but water temperatures have also begun to rise.

Harry’s River –  A few Atlantic salmon being found, but definitely not a great year.

Bay St. George Rivers – Numbers of Atlantic salmon are improving, but water temperatures are beginning to increase there.

Big East River at Hawke's Bay is a great location for watching Atlantic salmon leaping. but on June 28 there was only a single angler in the lowermost pool. (Photo Don Ivany/ASF)

Big East River at Hawke’s Bay is a great location for watching Atlantic salmon leaping. but on June 28 there was only two anglers in the lowermost pool. (Photo Don Ivany/ASF)

Eastern Newfoundland

Salmonier River – Rick Maddigan just returned yesterday from the river, reporting the salmon numbers low, and the temperatures rising. He notes that with tropical storm Arthur coming through on the weekend, the Atlantic salmon fishing could be much better next week.

Nova Scotia

Margaree – Although rain came across Nova Scotia last week, the hills on the Margaree kept the water away. Fishing was slow on the river according to reports. It will be interesting to see what impact the tropical storm has on both the angling and the water levels for next week.

LaHave – The Morgan Falls Fishway is reporting 18 large salmon and 28 grilse as of July 2. Good water levels and temperatures 22 C.. Last year, the returns to July 4 were 98 large salmon and 56 grilse.

Quebec

Quebec – Snapshot at the ¼ pole… (if this was a horse race).

Water levels are dropping, creating angling conditions anglers dream about. Hope is eternal from now to the full moon on July 12, when higher tides may bring in a greater number of Atlantic salmon.

Matapedia River
To June 30 2014: 225 fish have been reported landed (including 37 released)
To June 30 2013: 371 fish were reported landed (including 35 released)
To June 30 2012: 222 fish were reported landed (including 23 released)
To June 30 2011: 559 fish were reported landed (including 63 released)
To June 30 2010: 215 fish were reported landed (including 42 released)
The five year average based on reported catches = 318 fish landed
From June 26 to 30, the flow on the Matapedia dropped from 67 cubic meters per second to 36.  Conditions anglers dream about.

Causapscal River
To June 30 2014: 133 fish have been reported landed (including 7 released)
To June 30 2013: 141 fish were reported landed (including 18 released)
To June 30 2012: 101 fish were reported landed (including 15 released)
To June 30 2011: 130 fish were reported landed (including 8 released)
To June 30 2010: 69 fish were reported landed (including 7 released)
The five year average based on reported catches = 115 fish landed.

At Le malin pool on the Bonaventure there were more people than salmon on June 30, a scorching day on the Gaspé. (photo Claude Hamel)

At Le malin pool on the Bonaventure there were more people than salmon on June 30, a scorching day on the Gaspé. (photo Claude Hamel)

Bonaventure River
To June 30 2014: 45 salmon have been reported released and 11 grilse killed
To June 30 2013: 337 salmon were reported released and 28 grilse killed
To June 30: 2012: 209 salmon were reported released and 68 grilse killed
To June 30 2011: 359 salmon were reported released and 97 grilse killed
To June 30 2010: 288 salmon were reported released and 95 grilse killed

The five-year average based on reported catches is 248 salmon and 60 grilse.

York
To June 30 2014: 58 salmon have been reported released and 51 fish killed (breakdown not available)
To June 30 2013: 115 salmon had been reported released and 54 fish killed.

Dartmouth
To June 30 2014:  54 salmon have been reported released and 6 grilse killed.  An in-river count will be conducted in early July to determine if a harvest can be supported this year.
To June 30 2013: 111 salmon had been reported released and 9 grilse killed.

St-Jean
To June 30 2014:  3 salmon have been reported released and 11 grilse killed.
To June 30 2013:  21 salmon had been reported released and 4 grilse killed.

Matane
To June 30 2014:  103 salmon and 0 grilse have been counted – 5 salmon have been reported landed
To June 30 2013: 291 salmon and 4 grilse had been counted –   45 salmon and 4 grilse had been reported landed
To June 30 2012: 406 salmon and 69 grilse had been counted – 58 salmon and 17 grilse had been reported landed
To June 30 2011: 340 salmon and 35 grilse had been counted – 31 salmon and 7 grilse had been reported landed
To June 30 2010:  233 fish had been counted – 24 fish had been reported landed. The breakdown not available.
The 5 year average migration based on counted fish = 296
The 5 year average based on reported catches: 38

Mitis – Season opened on July 1
To June 30 2014: 60 fish have been counted (43 salmon and 17 grilse)
To June 30 2013:  236 fish had been counted (205 salmon and 31 grilse)
To June 30 2012:  261 fish had been counted (201 salmon and 60 grilse)
To June 30 2011:  363 fish had been counted (247 salmon and 116 grilse)
To June 30 2010:  176 fish had been counted (153 salmon and 23 grilse)
The 5 year average migration based on counted fish = 219

England and Wales

The stock assessments for Atlantic salmon rivers in England and Wales for 2013 are finally available, and certainly the numbers are not particularly encouraging.  To read the pdf report, click here.

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One Response to Temperatures Hit Summer Levels

  1. James Hoffman says:

    It’s criminal that they allow the large breeding salmon to be killed on the Causapscal.
    With the exploding striped bass population, and commercial netting in Greenland I am afraid angling for Salmo salar has seen its best days especially if the Bonaventure River is any indication…

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