THE startling numbers of salmon caught in the Tweed last year have left anglers wondering whether the figures are a sign of climate change or just a blip.

The second-best year ever for salmon catches on the River Tweed has generally been welcomed – 20,836 salmon were reported caught last year (down from 31,321 in 2010), 4,154 were caught by nets and 16,682 by rod and line – 68 per cent of the latter being released by anglers.

Last year was the first in which full catch and release for salmon was compulsory for the whole spring season.

The record-breaking figure was released by the River Tweed Commissioners (RTC) this week in their report for 2011, which includes details of salmon and sea trout catches.

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