Tag Archives: ireland

Begorrah! Humpies Hooked In Ireland

Pink salmon catches have been very light so far this month in our waters, but not so in a very, very unusual place.

The other side of the Atlantic.

Don’t worry, it’s unlikely Puget Sound’s humpies have lost their way.

IRISH FISHERY OFFICIALS ARE SCRATCHING THEIR HEADS ABOUT A FLURRY OF PINK SALMON CATCHES ON FIVE SYSTEMS THIS MONTH, THOUGH NONE HAVE HAVE BEEN AS BIG AS WILL LUTZ’S 2011 SNOHOMISH HUMPY. (FISHING PHOTO CONTEST)

But their cousins are being caught in fishing beats on five rivers in Ireland this month, including a 5-pounder that reportedly bit a prawn.

And “unprecented numbers” are being landed in rivers across northern Scotland as well as England, according to a TV report yesterday.

Before you get too excited about tapping into a brand-new market, Mr. Figgins, Irish and Scottish fishery officials worry about impacts on native Atlantic salmon and are encouraging anglers to record catch locations and keep any pinks they land. They want scale samples to determine the nonnative fish’s origin.

As for where the pinks came from, it is improbable that they’re strays from the Sky or Skagit.

“It seems unlikely that these fish made a migration due to their small size,” Dr. Greg Forde of Inland Fisheries Ireland said in a press release.

Apparently, the Russians planted some at some point in their Barents Sea rivers and they have since spread to Norway, on the other side of the North Sea from the British Isles.

If this is anything like The Great Humpy Outbreak Of 2011, when 3,828 probable strays from Puget Sound were counted at Bonneville Dam, it may be a function of a large return to those systems.

In the end, that did not lead to a run of pinks establishing itself in the Columbia, but the Green-Duwamish return is most likely the result of colonizers from North Sound rivers.