Wednesday, 2nd May 2012

Paul Gaskell, programme manager for Trout in the Town is interviewed for the online fishing magazine ‘Eat-Sleep-Fish’.

The topics are wide ranging and include the big issues facing our rivers, Paul’s background as a freshwater ecologist , the WTT and Trout in the Town  – and fishing !

Click here to access the magazine.  The interview with Paul is item  6.

Wednesday, 25th April 2012

Alan Kettle-White, Senior Fisheries Biologist at the Argyll Fisheries Trust, recently took a 30lbs 10ozs wild brown trout from Loch Awe, Scotland. This incredible fish was just (!) 95cm long – the photos below demonstrate how its vast weight is in its depth and breadth. The fish is thought to be the third largest wild brown trout caught in the UK. The fish was returned to the Loch carrying a radio tag; it is one of four fish tagged this year by Alan in a study to identify ferox spawning sites around Awe. The Trust can then work to ensure access to these sites is kept open and protect the habitat of these extraordinary trout populations. A day on Awe with Alan also featured in the WTT 2012 auction – could that lucky lot winner see a fish like this…?

Wednesday, 18th April 2012

The WTT's Dr. Paul Gaskell is writing a series of articles for Total Flyfisher magazine, which is available from good newsagents or via subscription on their website.

Paul's articles will be available here to download in pdf format the month after publication in the magazine:

Wednesday, 18th April 2012

March  2012 saw a WTT team (Tim, Paul and Gareth) heading to the Duchy of Lancaster water on the Pickering Beck. We were there at the request of Tony Walsh and Dave Southall of Pickering Fisheries Association and we also had a fully-laden camera crew in tow (Dean Hodson and John Pearson of Fish On Productions). The aim was to train local fishing club members in techniques of improving the prospects for both trout and grayling populations in their stretch of water – and to simultaneously use this exercise to produce training videos so that a much wider audience could benefit from the work done over two days. We also had the exciting and unusual prospect of using heavy horses to manoeuvre felled timber as, apart from the lowest field, much of the bankside terrain can be very difficult to access with petrol-driven machinery. These works were generously funded by the Environment Agency (North East Fisheries department), The Grayling Society as well as drawing on Wild Trout Trust resources.

The works within the river channel itself concentrated on augmenting some nice existing juvenile habitat by adding structures that were targeted at two additional life stages of trout and grayling: adult holding habitat and clean, size-sorted spawning gravels. We also made sure to provide some more substantial refuge areas for young fish to escape the worst of the spate flows that often pour down this river – as well as sheltering them from predators.

Another theme that we were keen to impress upon the club members is the importance of how the surrounding land is used – and the effect of such land use on the fish and invertebrate populations of their river. In order for the club to get the best benefit from the labours of installing structures within the channel – they are going to have to bring about a change to the dense coniferous forestry that is planted right up to the top of the bank for a large proportion of the Duchy water.

I look forward to returning to this section of river in a couple of years’ time with a fly rod in hand, and I hope that we will have won some converts within the fishing club membership by having a really positive impact on grayling and trout population numbers. The combination of reducing fine sediment input and increasing nutritious leaf fall by swapping from coniferous to deciduous forestry adjacent to the river – along with the increased spawning inputs, juvenile fish survival and adult pool habitat will be a great thing to see when it all comes together.

Paul Gaskell

Tuesday, 10th April 2012

A large part of the country is in drought and water levels in rivers and lakes are low even outside the drought areas. Low flows over the summer can also mean higher water temperatures, and warmer water holds less oxygen, putting fish under considerable stress. Lower water volumes also mean less dilution of pollutants and pathogens. The situation is likely to get worse as the year progresses, and it will be a difficult year for trout and other river wildlife in many areas.

 How can we help?

 First and foremost, reduce your own water use and encourage others to do so! Find top tips here.

 In terms of habitat management:

  • Allow trees, shrubs and bankside plants to grow and provide shade to keep water cool. Avoid cutting back vegetation to allow light in, especially on the deep pools which will be cool water refuges for trout.
  • Minimise cutting of in-channel weed, even if this interferes with your fishing!   Weed in the channel will help keep levels up, provide shady refuges for trout and places for them to avoid predation by birds.
  • Where in-channel weed and shade is lacking, consider making bundles of brash and pegging them into the channel to provide temporary cover, or create temporary shading over holding pools using cut trees, or branches spanning the channel, supported by posts and cable/wire.
  • Fish become stressed when water levels are low and the water is warm. Think carefully before fishing on hot days with low water levels. Don’t play fish for any more than absolutely necessary and release fish quickly and carefully.
  • ‘ Fish Rescues’ are a last  resort and must only be undertaken in consultation with the Environment Agency, or the relevant fishery authority in Ireland and Scotland. Make contact with your local Fisheries Officer and agree lines of communication and action if you think a fish rescue may be needed. Moving trout from drying sections into reaches further downstream is not always the best solution as it may put an even larger number of fish at risk by increasing the density of trout in the flowing sections. Be aware that unauthorised moving of fish may be an offence and could spread disease.

 The Environment Agency website has up to date bulletins on the drought here.


Tuesday, 3rd April 2012

The annual Wild Trout Trust Get Together will be held at the Tufton Arms in Cumbria on 2 and 3 June 2102.
The talks on the 2 June are a mixture of fishing and habitat, fun and information. There will be a 'Wild Trout Question Time'- your chance for some answers on wild trout ecology, habitat work and and fishing.
Speakers include Paul Procter, Stuart Crofts, Roger Smith, Will Cleasby, Simon Johnson and Shaun Leonard.

Click here for an agenda and details of how to book.

On Sunday 3rd we will disperse and take advantage of the excellent fishing on the Eden and its tributaries.
Click here for a guide to the available fishing.

A typical Eden trout

A typical leopardspotted Eden fish

Tuesday, 20th March 2012

The Wild Trout Trust would like to thank all the donors and bidders for making this an extremely successful auction raising £51,568 gross.

For details about our annual auction, including a copy of the 2012 catalogue, how to donate lots and how to bid, click here.

Our next auction will be in March 2013.

Friday, 9th March 2012

The EA have produced a really interesting but incredibly sobering report on the water situation in England & Wales: The Case for Change - Current and Future Water Availability The report indicates yet again but in stark terms what we think we know about the future for our environment: warmer with more frequent droughts, more people needing more water and big increases in pressure on our aquatic ecosystems. Click here for the report.

Monday, 20th February 2012

The UK Crayfish website, brings together up to date information about the UK’s only native crayfish, the White-clawed crayfish (Austropotamobuis pallipes) and its conservation. Also provided is a range of information about non-native crayfish species, their impacts and control. The website contains both professional and public channels to ensure that a wide variety of information is available on all aspects and issues relating to crayfish, regardless of what you know or what you want to know about crayfish, there will be something to interest you.

The professional channel contains a White-clawed crayfishconservation toolkit, it provides information on crayfish projects including ark sites and summarises crayfish research. The public channel provides an introduction to the different types of crayfish that occur in the UK, what to do if you find a crayfish and how you can help conserve our endangered White-clawed crayfish.

The website has been funded by the Environment Agency, with information compiled by Buglife, Stephanie Peay and the Environment Agency. For information regarding the website or if you would like to add a project or other information to the website, please contact Buglife on This email address is being protected from spam bots, you need Javascript enabled to view it .

Friday, 17th February 2012

In 2011 we held a photography competition in a bid to generate some high quality images for use in WTT publications.  The entries were judged by WTT President, Charles Rangeley-Wilson, who took the cover shot of last year’s Salmo Trutta magazine.
Charles said “The winner was hard to pick, but bearing in mind the standard of his other pictures I'm picking Don Stazicker whose overall selection was the strongest. His winning picture is perfectly timed and I know myself how hard a shot that is to get.  Charles Carr's Mayfly is also fabulous and this is my choice as runner-up.”

“Honorary mentions should also go to Kevin Milner and Ian Ashton. A lovely shot of a stricken mayfly and a simple, but nevertheless very evocative riverscape that would make anyone want to go fishing.”

Congratulations to Don who wins a day’s wild trout fishing arranged by the WTT. 
Look out for the images from the competition throughout the upcoming Salmo Trutta magazine in April.

Don Stazicker's winning image of a rising trout
Don Stazicker Rising Trout Winner



Charles Carr, Mayfly Silhouette

Charles Carr Mayfly Silhouette

Ian Ashton 'Early May'

IanAshton Early May



Kevin Milner, Stricken Mayfly

Kevin Milner Stricken Mayfly


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