We have another net bursting angling report this week, with some lovely pike and perch coming on line early in the New Year. On Ennell last week Gwenael Brunet from Brittany in France enjoying some sport jigging for perch on Ennell.It was certainly hard going but we eventually located some huge shoals of perch working on fry in deep water. Plus we have captured the Lough Ennell Monster on screen in 62.7ft of water; you never know what lies in the depths of our bigger lakes here in Westmeath. On the pike scene I joined my first angling club for 2015 and teamed up with Camlin anglers for their first pike competition of the New Year. The competition was fished along the River Shannon through Lough Forbes, near Newtownforbes.Ninteen boats ventured out and some nice pike came on line. The River Shannon and Lough Forbes is permit free, but Camlin River is on your I.F.I. permit. The permit issue here is a thorn in some angler’s nets, and will have to be addressed.

CRACKING PERCH ON RUBBER JIGS. It was tough going last week trying to locate perch on Ennell.These super predator fish are moving and feeding hard on their own fry in very deep water. Some of my favorite marks failed to produce the goods, so it was a case of working hard to locate the shoal fish. I had teamed up with Gwenael Brunet of Argentre Du Plessis near Brittany, in France.Gwenael is a pal of my work colleague in the Sunday World Eamon Dillon, and I promised to give him a day on one of our Midland Lakes. Hopefully it will come to something, and Gwenael will return to Mullingar in time with some angling pals. We had a wonderful few hours when I caught up with huge shoals of feeding perch. The perch were feeding hard on their own fry, and it’s a “reel” case of fish eat fish in the angling world. We dropped small rubber lure down on 4oz led weights, and as the say the rest is history. Gwenael even managed a few double hook-ups.

TACKLE UP FOR PERCH. You really don’t need top of the range gear for taking on perch be it during the winter months when the fish go deep, or summer time when they are sculling around in shallow water. All you really need is lightweight spinning gear and a few colorful spinners for warmer weather when the perch are feeding in shallow water, and this time of year a few weighted Rubber Jig head worms, or minnows when they are down deep. If you drop into David o, Malley or Brian Conlon in our local Angling Centers you will be well kitted out for small money. I always mean to photograph some of the Jigs & Rigs that work for perch, and some time I will eventually get around to it.” Watch This Space”.

ENNELL MONSTER ON THE MOVE. I came across a very unusual feature in deep water on Ennell last Friday. Naturally I am not going to publish the exact location as we might have some of the Lough Ness Hunters scanning Ennell.I told a few of my angling friends, and explained to them it was like a large rabbit head coming up from the bottom of the Lake. As it’s a family paper I cant publish what some of my angling pals answers were. Hopefully we will have room to publish the unusual feature I picked up on the bottom of Ennell in 62.7ft of water in a cool temperature of 4.5degree celcus.

CAMLIN PIKE COMPETITION. It was a magical day out last Sunday on the River Shannon and Lough Forbes, which is permit free. It was the first competition of neighboring club Camlin Anglers in Longford, and many of our local anglers had a cracking day out. A total of nineteen boats ventured out in a flooded River Shannon, and some lovely pike came on line. Top Rod was one of Irelands top preator anglers Joe McDermott and his young Nephew Jason. The deadly Duo rattled the nets with a pike of 10lbs 8oz. Ballymahon piker Mick Dalton fishing with another up and coming young angler Isaac Elliott finished 2nd with 10lbs 3oz, 3rd was Gerry McVeigh 9lbs 12oz, and Brendan Griffith finished 4th.The Angling Focus team featured in the prizes down the line, as did Conor Hannon of Drum Athlone, and Eamon Craven of St Colman’s Park Athlone.Presentation took place in the Castle Inn Newtownforbes, and we had a lovely evening sipping Hot Soup, and tucking into delicious finger food.

PERMIT TURNING ANGLERS AWAY FROM MIDLAND LAKES.I am not going to get into the politics of the Angling World, but as we drift into another angling season the permit issue has came up once again. Its an on going battle to encourage local and visiting anglers to get involved in the fishing game, and at the end of the day its all down to the cost. Here in the Shannon Region we pay a yearly permit, which I do, but don’t agree with it. Like many of my fellow anglers I compete a lot in competition, and every club has a fixed membership rate covering insurance, and the cost of running the club. In the coming weeks I will just give you a little insight into what type of money is spent here in the Midlands on Angling. The permit is certainly keeping visiting clubs and anglers from the Capital of the Midlands. You need a permit to fish Ennell, Owel.Derravaragh, Sheelin, the River Inny, and I actually need a permit to trot a worm on the River Brosna at the back of Shamrocks, come the 1st of March when the trout season opens. If you head for Delvin the Dysart lakes are permit free, as is Lough Ree, and once you cross Finea Bridge you can fish to your hears content permit free on the Gowna system. Its mind blowing, and if you are on Lough Ree at Inny Bay near Ballymahon you can fish the main lake permit free, once you venture up the Inny you pay the permit.

THAT’S IT. Yes I am getting wound up, and next week we will look into the permit issue a bit more. Plus just what type of revenue comes into Mullingar from the Angling World? Plus we have some news from Grace McDermott of Marie Media on the coming 2015 Ireland 2015 Angling Show come Febuary.Tight Lines till next week.

CONTACT. Mick Flanagan

Mobile: 087-2797270

E mail mick@midlandangling.com