The Scottish Government today published the official salmon and sea trout fishery statistics for the 2017 season. The total reported rod catch of salmon was 49,444 with 90% of the annual rod catch and 98% of the rod caught spring salmon catch released. The total reported catch of sea trout was 18,296 with 84% released.

Dr Alan Wells, Chief Executive of Fisheries Management Scotland said:

“Catches in 2017 were characterised by a reduced grilse run and a paucity of fresh fish in the autumn. As we have known for some time, marine conditions are not favourable and therefore our member DSFBs and Fisheries Trusts have continued to focus on ensuring that good numbers of healthy wild smolts are leaving our rivers. Our members make a hugely significant contribution to maintaining and improving our freshwater environment. We applaud the efforts of anglers who continue to take the conservation of salmon and sea trout very seriously.

“Fisheries Management Scotland have consistently called for greater action across the range of pressures that our migratory fish species are facing. We are working with the Scottish Government, SEPA, SNH and industry to ensure that negative impacts arising from other pressures, such as salmon farming, hydro generation, forestry, agriculture, predation and barriers to fish migration are appropriately mitigated.

“The efforts of fisheries managers are focused on minimising the pressures faced by our freshwater fish and ensuring that the ‘bed and board’ provided for the fish in their freshwater habitat is as good as it can be. These efforts have never been more important.”