How do you deal with poaching? – not the serious big stuff involving nets and and stuff I am talking about the low level stuff involving a guys just fishing the river without a permit?
I managed a couple of hours on Sunday afternoon and it was spoiled by having to talk to a few guys about not fishing with permits and with spinning rods. Sunday is fly only on the Kelvin as agreed by the members for a couple of years now. Two of the guys were totally pished and started giving dogs abuse saying I was arrogant and a jobsworth for asking them for permits, one of the guys almost fell in he was so drunk – they stated they were drinking in memory of their friend who had died at that spot the year previously of hypothermia, I have looked up the news however could find no record of it. I do not doubt them as beside the river you always find shrines made up out of football tops with the inevitable empty bottle of buckfast next to it. I am pretty sure I had a photograph of that shrine somewhere however could not find it!
The second guy was walking to the river carrying a spinning rod with a bloody great float attached to it. They were Glasgow City Council employees, you could tell that as they were wearing overalls with the logo on them – the conversation:
“Awright mate, you got a permit?”
“Well, you need a permit to fish here and on a Sunday it is fly only”
“How much are they?”
“Ahm no payin’ that I am only gonna fish it a few times” He smiled and winked
“Er, well, I am the Vice Chair and this is the Crown Bailiff and Secretary so it might be best not to fish as you could potentially get arrested”
“Aw well, I will just walk back to work then” they then proceed to walk down the path to the river – the only thing that is down this path is the river.
Luckily there were a few guys fishing down that way who would hopefully keep them right. The few guys were some passionate fly anglers who have done extremely well this season – the one saving grace of the situation is that they would tell them not to fish the water with their spinning gear in no uncertain terms.
You see this is the reason why all anglers need to ask each other whether they have permits or not – you see, every guy fishing the River Kelvin without a permit is a kick in the teeth for guys that do buy a permit.
The bottom line with paying for a permit is the knowledge that the cash is going towards making sure you have fish in the water. Those that do not pay for a permit are not contributing towards making sure that there is fish in the water and consequently are shafting the members. Additionally these guys are probably killing trout which is undoing the good work that the members have put in to ensure the stocks improve.
The thought of a nice brownie that I have caught and returned a few times on the dry fly being butchered by some guy with a maggot fucking pisses me right off!
Speaking of which I caught a couple of nice brownies on the Sunday – as I got their late in the day it was the tale end of the hatch – sedge were again the order of the day and I only had one on my fly box. I managed to tempt one trout in the beginning after many drifts to a small klink that I was sent by Marcel (a reader and regular poster on the forum) and it went absolutely bananas and again I wondered why I had left my net at home. The river was maybe a couple of inched higher than it was the last time I was out and the water was freezing cold. The oxygen content must have been high to make the fight like beasts.
I managed to hook a wee one with a tricky cast standing on the middle of a fallen tree and nearly lost my fly in a tree.
However even when I was thinking about the trout caught and the fish chat with some of the guys I had met at the riverside I was still thinking about the guys without permits who were just out to kill some time (and trout). I am pretty sure every river has them however at least on other river faced with a bailiff or anyone else they usually have the good grace to do a bolt.
I suppose the danger with some of the guys on the Kelvin is that they often get aggressive as that seems to be the standard macho bullshit when challenged on anything that they may be doing wrong.
I have no idea what the solution is – although I keep on coming back to a paid bailiff force that is on call 24/7 however the prices would be high. What gives? How do you guys view it when you meet someone that is clearly breaking the rules? Do you ignore it or say something?