Sunday, 28 July 2013

An uncertain future!


Photo 01 - Litter louts, an embarrassment to anglers everywhere!
 
An uncertain future!

This year will see the commencement of the works to be carried out regarding the new level of the loch to comply with the Selkirk Flood Protection Scheme. This will bring with it a new “norm” for the level of the loch probably somewhere around the current levels we are experiencing. There are some implications for us as custodians of the fishing and below we will present a brief outline of the challenges that confront us with this development.

Throughout the history of the lochs there has been enormous variation in the levels, some through natural occurrences and some through human intervention. There will have been natural dips and spikes in the angling fortunes caused by these events and we will now face a possible change in the fishing. Lowering the level of the loch is not without implications for us as anglers. Our littoral zones which harbour countless organisms are a vital part of the food chain with our fish species at the top. Seasonal variation has always been with us with autumn/winter generally seeing higher water levels whilst spring and summer lower levels.

Most of our littoral zones are in areas of water less than 6 metres deep as beyond this insufficient sunlight penetration means that vital plant life cannot flourish. The equation is therefore if zones lost are equal to zones re colonised then all will be well with a temporary blip to allow for the recolonisation process.  This process to some extent is dependent on the loch bottom where areas before the drop off into significantly deeper water are able to be re colonised the deeper areas will however be relatively barren!

The subject has been extensively researched with regard to the great lakes in Canada. The first thing to note is that change can be relatively slow and changes have to be measured in generational terms rather than years. Loch levels are dropping naturally up to six feet per sixty years due to the effects of global warming and temperatures are rising by one to two degrees in the same time period so the environment is never static it is constantly changing!

If the net result is that we lose littoral zones then without question our population of fish will be affected the extent being in relation to zones lost. The adaptability of species to environmental change will see some species flourish and others decline. The loch has of course been through this change many times examples being the extinction of Arctic Charr and the introduction of Pike and Perch to increase and vary sport fishing in the early seventeen hundreds. All these events would have had dramatic effects in the marine environment leading to loss of biodiversity and altered balance between the species of fish resident in the loch! Eutrophication is seen as a common accompaniment to reduction in water levels drastically altering the environment and would adversely affect our population of Brown Trout. We will however avoid this problem due to the huge areas of deep water restricting the growth of flora.

 The permanent drop in water levels will affect all living organisms in the loch whether it be to decreased amounts of food or lack of habitat for spawning. Birds, reptiles and amphibians are also affected by hydrologic changes but these do not concern us here. Pike which are wetland spawners are often affected badly by lowering of water levels after spawning as the fertilised spawn is dried out leading to the reduction or obliteration of that year class! Lower water levels in summer can overheat plants and dry out roots and cause death, similarly low waters in winter can expose vulnerable plants to freezing also with death as a consequence! The full effects of such a change are however enormous and we have only scratched the surface here as time is not on our side. We must however be vigilant when fishing noting the changes in shallow areas as new areas are colonised and old ones become terrestrial. With this potential for loss of wetland habitat we could expect some species to be compromised at best finding new habitat on the loch and at worst being forced to other areas! Social feedback in reporting such changes will be hugely important in years to come as catches or the lack of will provide us with important information.  We can and will as part of our habitat improvement programme replant willow whips close to the water’s edge to lend a helping hand to the natural recolonisation process hopefully maintaining the degree of nourishment available from insects that live on such plants above and below the water level.

We are entering into the unknown with regard to specifics, we have a good idea of what to expect, but the exact nature of these changes will only become apparent as time progresses. We are facing a severe example of change; however the custodians of all waters will also see great change though in their case it will be a much more gradual change over a longer period of time. It is not however all doom and gloom; the new fish pass to be constructed will ease the way for the passage of migratory fish and assist our Brown Trout population in moving in and out of the loch as we suspect they do annually at spawning time. Yes the future is uncertain; it was always going to be so! That uncertainty will however take place much sooner than we expected!

Photo 02 - Time effort and money wasted!
 
Loch keeper update!

We are still unfortunately without a loch keeper. I have received numerous phone calls this week bemoaning the fact that our agents cannot on some occasions act decisively. The problem is that all who are involved in trying to help out are so doing on an ad hoc basis! Please be patient we are doing the best we can in a difficult situation! If Ian and Alastair were not assisting us the level of service would be nil!

On a brighter note we have two people very interested in the position and both are keen anglers! They are both suited to the position and we have given them both the relevant information regarding the position and will be in touch with them soon. We hope to have appointed a new loch keeper by the end of the week. Stay tuned for the updated situation!

All for nothing!

You will see from the photos (photo 02,03) of the Riskinhope burn that before we have even commenced our tree planting programme the degradation of the stream line has commenced and looks to be progressing rapidly! Three posts in the new fence are completely unsecured with a heavyweight straining post soon to give way! In the words of the contractor who erected the fence “a complete waste of time. There are three areas of concern which will collapse after the winter floods take their toll and the planting of trees in this area looks to be a futile gesture!

Bank stabilisation work to stop this erosion would be futile as a couple of years worth of erosion has to be allowed for to give the root network time to form! We are however obliged to plant some trees as a significant amount of public money was injected into this project with the specific aim of increasing the number of trees in the area! We will carry out this work, though with heavy hearts and little expectation! Health and safety with regard to operator safety will dictate what and where we plant in September but what we viewed as a significant step towards improving the habitat of this burn now looks like a neglected disaster area which has consumed large amounts of public money, not the outcome we would have hoped for! This also jeopardises our bank stabilisation works the basis of which is having significant bank sides to allow our planting to take place. Compared to our work at Kirkstead it increasingly looks like it has been all for nothing, how depressing!

Photo 03 - Winter will see this one out!
 
Rodent eradication!

We examined the baited areas yesterday morning and a couple of piles were missing but perhaps significantly a couple of piles of poisoned bait were left untouched. There is a combination of reasons as to why this was the case and we have again heavily baited the area. After evaluating next week’s results we are proposing to set a couple of traps to see what turns up! My gut feeling is that the under floor population has been wiped out and that outsiders on seeing the premises vacant are moving in to the luxury accommodation. It remains to be seen if this is a correct assumption!

 Recent catches!

This week saw the continuation of the Pike bonanza with numerous specimens caught and safely returned. The top fish for the week was a lithe thirteen pounder caught by an angler from Broxburn. The Brown Trout however have proved elusive with only small fish being recorded mostly on sinking lines and attractor fly’s. Numerous Perch have been caught many on the fly in relatively shallow water whilst Eels continue to dement Pike anglers by stripping baits and giving abject lessons in knot tying using the anglers wire trace. One half of the “likely lads” Scotty landed a super two pounder which was safely returned Eels of course are a protected species and may not be taken. Minnows abound in the shallows; a trap made and set by Les returned dozens of them!

Littering!

Yes, yet again the amount of litter left by anglers is causing us concern, have a look at the photo above (photo 01) and you will see the problem clearly emanates from Pike anglers! Bait packets strewn all over the shop for someone else to pick up, in this case me! It’s a simple matter to take your rubbish away and that does not mean putting it in a larger bag and leaving it lying! Our new loch keeper will be initiating our new policy rigidly on litter which simply put means, if you are caught leaving litter you will be barred from angling at our lochs sine die! We need to stamp this kind of behaviour out and taking this line is the only way to achieve this. If you want to fish on our lochs do not leave litter!

Fishing instructors

We are pleased to report that on concluding our investigations into this group we have found no areas of concern. All the instructors advertising were found to be amply qualified for the job they undertake covering areas of practical competence theory and health and safety! This being the case our new advisory site on how to select a fishing guide will only include a passing reference to this group of people. For those wishing to follow our advice (and you are free to do as you wish) the same criteria however should be used when contemplating paying for one of these fellows.  Instructors should note that the rules applying to fishing guides also apply to instructors. If your intention is to operate commercially on our lochs you must contact a member of the club committee before embarking on to our waters!

 

The wider world in my view!

Coverage of the birth of George Cambridge

I only caught the prolonged coverage on the ten o clock news and that was much too much for me! Without exception I would imagine everyone is pleased to hear of the safe birth of a baby and the start of what one would hope would be a useful and fulfilling life! I heard that the main TV channels disrupted the normal viewing schedules to come up with mind numbing programmes relating to this birth. A newsflash would have been enough with these pointless programmes being aired on BBC 4 and ITV 2 for those desperate for news!

Women have babies every day without ceremony; Dod Cambridge should be no different! Problem is however he is different in that the taxpayer will have to for the most part fund his existence! This child will enjoy privilege and wealth far beyond what any normal child could expect! The BBC received countless complaints over their coverage of the events and this is only right and proper. The royal loving nation they try and portray does not exist, I cannot recall a single street party during the diamond jubilee, these are sentiments of the past now confined to upper class England and under the hatchet of the clueless Con – Dems it is arrogant and inappropriate to highlight such excesses!

Families are on the breadline with the usage of food banks up by a fivefold figure. People “employed” on 20 hr per week contracts on the minimum wage struggling to make ends meet whilst being force fed this royal tosh! Lord Snooty was overjoyed as yet another was born into privilege his view however is not the view of the majority of the British public!

Theresa May and diabetes!

I was genuinely sorry to hear of this development as in spite of many medical advances this is a significant life shortening illness! Oh yes there is insulin therapy without which all insulin diabetics would be dead including me! There is more to the secretions of the pancreas than insulin which is clearly shown by the fact that even with rigorous control of blood sugar levels diabetic complications occur! Nerve damage leading to neuralgia, limb amputation and parathesia, loss of balance, poor circulation and cardiovascular problems leading to heart attack and stroke are all much more common among diabetics! All that on top of low and high blood sugar events! This is a serious chronic disease that can be managed to minimise complications of which there are many, cure however is not on the horizon and many years away!

Sunday, 21 July 2013

A benchmark and a couple of thank you's!


 
Photo 01 Fraser displays a nice specimen.
 
Stop Press 19.45hrs
We now have an expression of interest from an angler regarding the vacant position of lochkeeper, we will keep you informed.
The benchmark for the lochs!

Yes it has come to be seen as such Fraser Patterson’s week long stint at the lochs gives us a year on year picture of how the lochs are doing with regard to fish populations resident in the lochs. The last couple of years provided us with desperate weather conditions which obviously affected the fish and their feeding patterns. This year the situation is much better with many Pike and Trout caught. Here is the catch report submitted by Fraser –

 

Saturday 1st   Top end 

 

No fish

 

Sunday  2nd   Sculpture 

 

No fish

 

Monday  3rd    Sculpture

 

5:45am   Pike 6lb

 

6:30am   Pike  4lb

 

10:00am  Pike 5lb

 

9:45pm   Pike 9lb

 

 

Tuesday 3rd   Bottom end

 

11:15am  Pike 11lb

 

7:00pm    Pike 10lb 4oz

 

 

Wednesday 4th   Bottom end

 

3:30am    Pike 9lb

 

3:40am    Pike 11lb

 

5:00am    Pike 10lb

 

7:20am   Pike 12lb

 

10.30am  Pike 9lb 4oz

 

11:20am  Pike 10lb 8oz

 

12:20pm  Pike  7lb

 

 2:20pm   Pike  8lb 8oz

 

 

Thursday 5th    Boat shed

 

 

2:15   Pike  7lb

 

 

 

So as you can see I had a great week and I think the average fish is bigger than last year.

On the Tuesday I was ledgering for perch and catching plenty small ones I managed to hook in to something that was way bigger than perch only having 5lb nylon on I had some battle before it finally showed its self after about 15mins.It was a pike and it must have been about 15/16lb and i could see my worm in the corner of its mouth. I had her really close to side twice and I thought I was going to get her but she took one more long run and broke off.

Of all the pike I caught only 1 had an old trace in it and I managed to get both the hooks out easily without causing any damage.

All the pike had signs of spawning recently and were all a bit on the lean side. I tried with my camera and have included a couple of the better pictures.

 

 

Thanks for everything      Fraser
 
Photo 02 - Another of Fraser's catch.
 

Well thank you Fraser you are most welcome, once again this is great information and it looks like you very much enjoyed your fishing. It is heartening to hear of only one Pike with an old trace in situ hopefully our rule enforcement is bringing this about! Yet another batch of invaluable information which over the years will give us a picture to predict future fishing prospects.

 

Photo 03 - Around a third of the total catch of Mackerel.
 
A very good evenings fishing!

 

Mike Wood, Stevie Nimmo and I were invited by John Wright and Chris Empson (our competition winner) to come to Dunbar on Thursday evening for a session Mackerel fishing to hopefully stock up enough bait for the coming Pike season. Given the poor quality of shop bought pre packed insipid soft bait this was an offer just too good to refuse. I set the sat nav for Dunbar Harbour where Chris has his boat moored and duly arrived at Cromwell harbour at the appointed time. It turned out however to be the wrong place! I was at the old harbour the new harbour is where I should have been!

On getting there (thanks Stevie) we exchanged greetings and got aboard the boat an ex lifeboat skilfully converted by Chris (a master carpenter) into a practical fishing boat. Powered by a trusty Lister diesel engine (which Stevie I am sure could strip and rebuild blindfolded) I immediately felt at home. Chris and dad Terry supplied all that we would require even to the extent of traces and pies and sausage rolls. Terry said we would travel out about half a mile and commence fishing. On the second drop I felt a light knock and pulled in our first fish an eight inch Whiting which was returned being undersized.

This was the signal for ever increasing piscatorial mayhem as we landed Mackerel one after another some drops returning 4 mackerel per trace putting a tight loop into the sturdy boat rods. Mike and I were on one side whilst John and Stevie were on the other. Mike and I stuck to catching mackerel whilst strangely Stevie and John embarked on a session of tackle testing often to destruction! When they had completed their tests and found the optimum combination of rod reel etc they also started to land the aggressive Mackerel by the bucket load. It was fast and furious when we hit the shoal then nothing as we passed over them only to resume the slaughter when we hit the next shoal. We fished until ten on what was a lovely night, weather and fishing wise. We didn’t get a proper total for the catch but we filled six large bags and the smaller one I took contained 33 Mackerel averaging about a pound and a half! So at a rough guess we hauled in well over 200 Mackerel (the red box in the photo and 2 buckets full)! We could have had many more as the fishing at the finish as dusk approached was intense with three and four being caught on every drop! Conservation came to mind as we ceased fishing all having ample numbers for bait and the pot, I smoked a couple and they are delicious!
Photo 04 - Climb on to their rock and expect to get severely pecked!

These were firm ultra fresh specimens perfect from a dead bait point of view oozing blood and fish oil, no self respecting Pike could ignore such bait! The seasons bait had now been taken care of as well as a good few meals to boot! We thanked the lads who selflessly aided us in a most satisfying evenings fishing, Chris guiding us to the known drifts and dad Terry unhooking at breakneck speed all that we caught injuring himself on a good few occasions! Just try removing the hook from a Mackerel when three others are going berserk pulling frantically +on the same line, a dodgy business I can tell you!

Chris, Terry and John thanks for a fantastic evenings fishing where we all landed loads and had a thoroughly enjoyable evening! An evening’s angling among real anglers where we fished as the honoured guests of the three lads above and we did not have to sully the good name of angling by crossing their palms with silver, their reward was our joy and satisfaction and our reward was an evening in the company of three real anglers, fishing as it should be! An absolutely perfect and peerless evenings angling! In the fellowship of angling Thank you!

Photo 05 - Courtesy of regular visitor David Proudlock a friendly Sandpiper.
 
Loch keeper update

We have not yet secured a candidate to fill the vacant post of loch keeper so our transitional arrangements are as follows. For boats/permits Monday to Friday please call the club number (Ian) which has been reactivated and is as follows 07724523777 if Ian is unable to help you may obtain permits from the Glen Cafe, the Gordon Arms Hotel or the Tibbie Shiels Inn. It is also possible to obtain a rowing boat from the Tibbie. If using these numbers you cannot obtain the service you require please phone me on 07980350031 and I will do what I can to help. This is not the level of service we would like to offer but given the circumstances it is the best we can do! A committee meeting will soon take place in which the topic of the loch keeper will be explored to try and improve the service we offer. We extend our apologies to all who have been experienced difficulty and thank all who have been inconvenienced for their forbearance!

Membership!

A few visiting anglers have been asking about membership of the club. This is the situation if you are accepted to become a member, the first year includes a joining fee of £20.00 which means the total payable is £50.00 for the first year thereafter the annual fee is £30.00p/a payable in December. If you allow your membership to lapse without good reason you will have to pay the joining fee again, that would include not renewing on time. The answer is simple renew on time! It is eminently possible that a new way of working beckons for the club involving more member participation, there will be more on this next week.

Pike aplenty!

Good numbers of Pike continue to be caught with Gala Anglings secretary James Rae who fished as our guest catching the biggest of the fortnight weighing in at fifteen pounds. A Glasgow angler cat a triple comprising of a twelve, an eight and a four. Yesterday Les in between carrying out numerous functions caught a nine and a six pounder. David Proudlock from Dumfries on a recent visit got among the fish and sent in the stunning picture (photo 04) of a Sandpiper who provided delightful company on a recent visit. David is the type of angler we welcome at the lochs, no matter what the weather or the loch throws at him he can always take something from a day at the lochs. Yet another real angler! So they are there and up for the fight! Strangely we don’t hear from the moaning Muppets much this year, shame on the empty headed fools!

The case of the invading rat!

On looking yesterday it was clear the rodents under floor had cleaned out all of the poison we had set for them. I have no doubt that all have been exterminated but as a precaution we have again heavily baited the area and will conclude our eradication programme with a final baiting session next week.

The wider world in my view!

Lord Snooty and I in agreement!

Oh it’s happened before but it is nevertheless a rare occurrence! The ultra capitalist who seeks to make the rich richer and keep the poor in the gutter where he thinks they belong has stated publicly that search engines such as Google must do more to stamp out the availability of child pornography on the web. The PC brigade at Google is keen to maintain user freedom to search for whatever they want which is fine up to a point!

There is and can be no situation when searching for the vile filth which sees children severely compromised and damaged for life forced into committing acts which are sick and abhorrent as well as being illegal! Snooty must summon up resolve and courage which to date he has not shown to gather allies and take the necessary steps to legislate to make searching for this filth impossible or as near as it can be made so!

Of course the record of Snooty is that of talking of a good job, the reality however is that following the bold statements the end result is a U turn or unmitigated blundering leading to red faces on the world stage! So to Lord Snooty I would say for once let your actions match your lofty words and get this major outrage sorted – smartly!

A not so smug Lord Snooty!

Following the complete U turn on tobacco packaging allegedly brought about by the PR man for the tobacco industry Lynton Crosby who astonishingly is also an advisor to Lord Snooty, he still refuses to give a straight answer to a simple question - Did Crosby cause Lord Snooty to change policy. There is no doubt that in my mind Snooty has deferred to the tobacco barons who wield considerable political power and contribute much to the Tory coffers. The opposition parties must cast off the cloak of weakness and press the pompous fool for open disclosure on the subject.

The tobacco barons in spite of irrefutable evidence of health damage continue to ply their products and suck in new customers. These people devoid of any morals seek only profit even after considering the huge medical implications for smokers! It seems they cannot control their urge for profit, it therefore follows that government must take swift and decisive action to bring this industry to its knees and plough its ill gotten gains into health care! Lord Snooty has clearly been knobbled by the cigarette producers via Crosby and has demonstrated clearly that he is not a fit person to head a government!

Tory puppets the Lib –dems are up in arms but as usual do nothing to correct the situation however that is precisely what we have come to expect from them – nothing but loud protestation! There is no case to defer this measure but much evidence to progress it urgently and much further. Snooty will continue to prevaricate and do nothing it’s time for weak Milliband to toughen up and expose Lord Snooty for the fool that he clearly is!

“Royal” baby!

I was appalled to hear a midwife speak on the impending birth of this child. She stated how it was vital that in this case everything must be perfect! Surely this is the aspiration of all midwives in all births irrespective of the setting or means to pay!  Yes Kate will be surrounded by numerous highly qualified consultants more numerous than those present at the AGM of the Royal College of Obstetricians whilst Mrs Average having her child on the NHS is lucky to have a single newly qualified midwife in attendance! Top notch service if you can pay, if you can’t then its pot luck! Surely not the type of heath care for the 21st century!

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Loch keeper update!


 Photo 01 - Sheep using dry stane dyke as a sunscreen on the way to Megget!

Loch keeper update!

To date we have received no expressions of interest with regard to the position, we are hopeful however that as the news permeates the locality we will hear from some interested party! Thankfully those around us as always are keen to assist us in any way they can and Alastair at the Tibbie has agreed to help us out with pre booked boat hire as and when he can. He also informed us that a former employee may return to the area and would likely be interested in the position.

Our former loch keeper Ian has also agreed to help out as he can issuing and checking permits and letting out boats as he is able. The Tibbie and the Glen Cafe are also assisting us with selling permits and we are grateful to them for their assistance!

It is important to be aware that even though these good people are helping us out we are still operating at a significantly reduced capacity! There is more chance of obtaining a boat by booking in advance giving us time to try and meet your needs, turning up on the day seeking boat hire will invariably lead to disappointment so pre book if you can. It is now incumbent on all members to ask of any anglers they do not know to inspect their permits to ensure they are fishing within the law! Similarly visiting anglers should not feel aggrieved on being asked to show their permit to any club member who asks to see it! We hope this situation is resolved quickly but we must be proactive in case it is not!

The language barrier!

Look at photo 02 and you will see the result of difficulties in comprehension. The bizarre way the boat is chained up would seem to serve no purpose at all and indeed it does not. A couple of possibly Polish lads had appeared at the boathouse seeking a boat for fishing later in the day and since we had no loch keeper and no one would be around to take the boat in Les had asked them to use the twisted wire hawser to loop through the oars specifically the rollocks to secure them to the boat chain. When I came upon the boat the hawser had been used to extend the length of the chain and the oars were left footloose and fancy free resting on the boat seats! Les said they appeared like decent lads but were obviously confused due to language difficulties – come back Piotr we need you badly!

Photo 02 - Wire hawser not really securing the oars!
The very last supper!

Yesterday we laid out the poison that will begin the extermination of all rodent life underneath our boathouse. I had been sitting quietly scanning the mildly rippling water looking for rising Trout whilst pondering a few things when the familiar sound of the heavyweight rodent took my attention away and quickly refocused my attention on his movements. He immediately headed towards the pile of poisoned barley no doubt scented by the pharma boffins to be irresistible to rodents. There was no hesitation on the part of the rat as he chomped greedily into the pile, he knew of my presence but as long as I kept still he would tolerate me observing him.

Looking at him as far as rats go he looked to be a prime specimen, lithe, muscular and very quick when the need for speed was required, all in all a good rat among his kind! This creature which I must admit I found loathsome due to inherent social conditioning had done me no harm, in fact was quite happy to defer to me if I chose to exert my authority by moving towards him. He knew his place in the order of things! After a few minutes he had finished the not inconsiderable pile of barley and quickly moved to the next one to eat some more and fill his cheeks with barley no doubt to transport to his nest underneath the floor.

This was very good; our plan was indeed going well, each delivery of poisoned barley under floor further ensuring the eradication of the whole family in one fell swoop! There is no doubt we could for the most part coexist if it were necessary but inbuilt programming built into all of us shouted that the presence of these creatures in our domain was unacceptable and their removal permanently was the only option! As I watched him feeding on what undoubtedly was his last supper as soon he would become symptomatic of the terminal malaise we had inflicted upon him and haemorrhagic blood loss would take place which would ebb away his very life and that of any family! I could not help but feel some compassion for the creature which had moved into our boathouse seeking only good accommodation and food for his family. Conflict with us would be avoided as it was in his interests for this to be the case; it was however the one chance in whatever number that conflict would occur that led us to be judge and jury thereby sealing his fate and that of his family.

As I watched intently he filled his cheeks from the second pile of life ceasing food I could sense myself feeling regret at the actions we had carried out and I thought to myself that yes, we are indeed an arrogant species inflicting our will on those we deem pestilent, justifying death, subjugation, slavery and much more to those we class as unsavoury or subservient to us! Our eyes met for the last time as he again stocked his cheeks and I felt a lump in my throat as I knew we would never again meet in life! His cheeks now bulging he sped off under the floor to the family nest unknowingly the bringer of death!  As I left on shutting the door I thought, trying to mitigate my feelings of guilt that he had indeed enjoyed his supper, the very last supper!

Once bitten....

It happens most years but last year I avoided being bitten by a Clegg or Horsefly probably due to the non event summer we endured. On Thursday I was again bitten by this bloodsucking pest. Unlike bees and wasps you do not hear them coming the first thing that alerts you to the fact you have been bitten is the pain on the affected part of the body as the fly slices in and removes blood. If you are quick you can execute the creature but alas it is too late as any transmission of infection has already taken place!

In most cases in this country the body’s immune system deals with the infection without too much ado, in my case there was localised infection some eruption yielding dirty brown pus and it now looks to be healing well. There’s not much that can be done to avoid such bites as bare skin (mandatory in this great weather) is a magnet to these pests. Any redness or swelling spreading from the initial bite site or signs of systemic infection requires prompt medical attention, just one of the many plagues brought on by good weather; it seems perfection is just a bridge too far!

Liar Clegg courtesy of The Daily Mirror!
The wider world in my view!

Buying what we already own!

I grimaced when I heard Labour defector now Tory puppet and faux pas expert Vince Cable spout forth Tory priority that the Royal Mail is to be privatised! But not as part of the Tory strategy to end public ownership but to reward the staff with a £2,000 share bonanza, benefit the private investors that do so much (joking) for the country and give the gullible public (middle England)the chance to pay for what they already own! Private investors are lining up rubbing their hands with glee to get shares in this great British institution that you and I have invested heavily in to turn the company into a very profitable one!

Two thirds of the British public are against such a move towards privatisation, 96% of the workforce is against it! Only the clueless Con-dems and the greed ridden investors are for it to better their own ends! Look at the privatised utility companies the majority now are owned by foreign interests and it is a fair bet that foreign giants such as Deutsche Post will gobble up the Royal Mail! Oh yes the universal service will be guaranteed for a limited period but as more profit is sought “rationalisation” becomes inevitable with workers consigned to the scrap heap terms and conditions dismantled, the universal service is dispensed with as maximum profit comes to the fore! Quality and comprehensive service provision consigned to history!

Centrica who own British Gas a once public utility has just recently withdrawn from a clean fuel generation project considered vital for the future! The reason is that the backward looking shareholders want increased dividends and don’t really give a hoot about the future! Lord Snooty is said to be furious I don’t know why because it was his ilk that created the situation in the first place! Profit over progress yet another ugly facet to the machinations of the greed ridden capitalists! It of course almost goes without saying that the Tory puppets the Lib -dems have reneged yet again on a promise! They had promised only to go along with a minority sale of the Royal Mail but as usual they lied, but hey at least they can be relied on for that trait!

There is no valid reason for this privatisation to take place the main factors for it taking place are Lord Snooty’s Tory idealism and an attempt to put temporary money into the hands of disaffected Tory voters just in time for the election! What he fails to mention is that in the event of failure which is the norm for this government ownership will revert back to the state! People need to remember the state is the last gasp lender! Worth thinking about if you are considering investing in this fiasco! The communication workers union having vision, seeing the true picture have threatened industrial action over this and I wholeheartedly agree with them! The Royal Mail is too important to be put into the hands of those who seek massive and unending profit! It’s simply a well managed scam selling a company we already own back to the greedy and gullible. Go for privatisation at your peril, don't tell Sid, warn him off!

Bungling Bill does it again!

Yes bungling Bill Hague who likes sending heavily armed masked troops into friendly territory has yet again blotted his copybook by mouthing “stupid woman” as a retort to the words of labours Cathy Jamieson. Ms Jamieson unlike bungling Bill does not have a record of unmitigated blundering and is universally seen as a thinking and safe pair of hands. This administration of fools seem to have a problem with women worth remembering if you are a female voter! Yet another example of this chuck it and see government who haven’t a clue but like to tell us they are on the ball. A bigger collection of fools and buffoons you will not encounter!

Next week – Fraser Patterson’s week at the loch!

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Loch keeper required!


 


 Image 01 - Our ad for a new keeper!

Loch keeper required!

We regret to announce that our current loch keeper Dave has resigned his position as loch keeper for the club. We thank him for his work on our behalf and wish him well for the future. However we now find ourselves in a difficult position with no loch keeper at a busy time of the year especially when the loch is fishing very well indeed! We already have notices out asking to hear from people that may be interested in the job and hope to retain someone soon.

The job can be described as follows – checking and issuing permits, liaising with riparian owners, business establishments in the area and maintaining good relations with the local community making sure our angling activities do not adversely impact on them. Caring for the club assets mainly boats and engines and letting out of these as required. Renumeration will be an honorarium plus commission from permits sold. Time off by arrangement, we could not foresee any circumstances where time off would be refused and will do our very best to fit in with your requests. We are very flexible with regard to your duties. You would be working on your own initiative for the most part dealing with the responsible angler that we encourage. relaying information to us on a weekly basis.  Since the position is based at the lochs the candidate should be reasonably close to the loch as travelling could become a negative issue. If you feel you could work in this framework please call Richard on 07980350031 (anytime) or on 01896752337 (late evening only) for a blether.
Photo 01 - A blaze of colour at the village hall!

The club phone number will be inoperative as it is still in Dave’s hands however it will be reactivated once we receive it back. Until we can secure the services of a new loch keeper we unfortunately will only be able to offer a much reduced service for engines and boats. We apologise for this and look forward to normal service being resumed as soon as possible. In any event during this restricted period please phone 07980350031 and we will endeavour to help out as we can!

A dirty rat!

I sat awhile yesterday pondering the above situation and our possible options for dealing with it. I could hear from behind me rustling and what sounded like heavy footsteps. We are quite used to hearing the pitter patter of mice running in the secret channels popping up into the boathouse through known orifices, this sound was however very different! Looking at the short video below you will see the culprit a heavyweight dirty rat!

 

video
 
Video 01 - confirmed! It's a dirty rat!
 
Yes it’s a rat, not a water vole as I had hoped. A vicious carrier of disease, which would explain the complete absence of our usual mice rummaging around. These creatures apparently are very rarely solitary which probably means there is a family under floor. This would negate my first thought of having the creature shot as he is fearless with my presence having no effect on his intentions. I say he because the males are much heavier than the females and you can hear this fellow thumping around like a super heavyweight mouse wearing wooden clogs! I think the only solution is a mass and sustained poisoning programme over a couple of weeks unfortunately eliminating all that lives under floor! Its a somewhat savage solution but these rats breed so quickly that if we do not wipe out the current residents completely we could end up poisoning them on a weekly basis! The poison has been acquired and we begin the extermination programme next week, we will keep you posted!

Good fishing!

Cath and Lisa at the Glen Cafe yesterday were kind enough to give us a pile of returns they had received from visiting anglers and they make very good reading indeed! Lots of Trout up to two pounds being caught mostly falling to the artificial fly. Wet and dry flies with the occasional fish being taken on a size 12 lure/attractor pattern in this case Ace of spades! Significant numbers of 8 inch Trout which would seem to suggest good recruitment from spawning. Pike continue to be caught with a nice fifteen taken by 3 Carlisle anglers who also bagged a 6 and a 9 pounder. Dead baiting was by far the most successful method with oily sea fish being the most successful. This year the post spawning feed actually happened as opposed to the last couple of years when there was simply not a lot!

Loads of Perch are also being caught with a Mepps or similar blade spinner accounting for good numbers. Much to the disappointment of Pike anglers the Eels are back with a vengeance shredding and stripping baits and as if that was not enough tying traces into knots that even if you tried could not construct anything similar!

Till the next time Tight Lines!

As you will appreciate there is much to do on Sunday hence the short post! 
Very well done Andy Murray!