English Rivers Fall Behind European Neighbours


Sean Meeghan

Looks like a typical lack of joined-up thinking to me. We seem incapable of making the link between sensible land usage and river management. I suspect that it's more a case of commercial interests over-riding common sense and authorities taking the easy way out and allowing flood plains and river catchment areas to be developed.
Depressing about the management of our river systems - despite the improvements in many systems since the dark days of industrial pollution (as in the Mersey basin)

What is encouraging is the clear regard the Angling Trust has seemingly garnered in such a short time. Agencies with which we had a number of frictions with, such as the RSPB, are now happily working in concert with us. I am not so naive as to believe no future conflicts will occur but these burgeoning relationships can only minimise such events.
If you read the angling press,they harp on about the 70's match fishing,it was the "heyday of river match fishing",huge bags of roach,bleak etc.it was common to have 180 peg matches on the thames,trent,etc with amazing silverfish bags.

I remember the pollution,and how the word itself became, through the media,into our commonlanguage .

So where are the 100lb roach bags today,(we all know cormorants are a problem)but I believe our rivers are just too clean today.

PS If the RSPB are so concerned about fish and our rivers,why dontthey they do something about controlling cormorants,mergansers etc,depriving our beloved kingfishers etc of their prey?

Sean Meeghan

Peter, you're living in cloud cuckoo land!

There's no such think as a river that's too clean. OK so some fish thrive in semi-polluted water, but others don't. This means that you get unbalanced ecosystems which contain hidden pollutants that do untold damage. If you want large bags of fish go fish a commercial fishery where the stocking density mimics the 'good old days'.

If you think that the control of fish eating birds can be achieved by anything other than wholesale slaughter then think again! Shooting a few of our feathered friends isn't going to solve anything. What we need to do is work with like minded allies (such as the RSPB) to encourage sensible fishing practices, the control of what is dumped at sea and the cleaning up of coastal sewage discharges.

Don't blame the media - you've only gotr yourself to blame.

Insert red angry face here << >>

(No 'smilies' in my browser
Blimey Seanthats the worst bollocking I've had since school.

Did I really say anything about wholesale slaughter?

I was an RSPB member until I got fed up with their advertising-spam-junk mailetc.

I am a member of the A.T.

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Geoff Maynard

Contents Editor
<blockquote class=quoteheader>peter crabtree 2 wrote (see)</blockquote><blockquote class=quote>So where are the 100lb roach bags today,(we all know cormorants are a problem)but I believe our rivers are just too clean today.</blockquote>
Too clean? Hmm. Or perhaps it's more likely we just have invisible dirt these days. I too remember when the Thames had floating foam rafts of pollution yet there was a roach a chuck even then. As the river got cleaner, the fishing got slower and slower. I wonder if it's nitrates and hormones and god knows what else in the water. Stuff we can't see but it's still there sure enough. What chemicals do farmers spray on fields today that weren't used 50 years ago? And every time it rains, gets washed into the rivers - perhaps not enough to poison the fish, but enough to make them sick for a while? Put them off spawning at crucial times?... I haven't a clue - but the EA ought to have.

Sean Meeghan

/forum/smilies/smile_smiley.gif Thanks Peter I'll use them sparingly!

But seriously, sorting out our water management issue requires joined up thinking and I did think that your post was a bit head in the sand. We've got to forge relationsgips with powerful allies, not pee them off.

john conway (CSG - ACA)

What we need is to concentrate on the bottom of the biomass pyramid not the top that will look after it’s self. Like Sean says we must build strong links with other organizations and be prepared to pay for it.

BTW I went on the sitefrom the hyperlink in the original article and it crash out on me when I tried to move my little pin on the map.

The bad one

Well-known member
Nah you're all wrong it's bloody otters! They're everywhere in their 100 of thousands, you can't see em because they hide, coz they use the most up to date surveillance equipment to spot an angler coming 300 yards away. They have the most powerful allies possible......the beardy weirdy tree hugging sandal wearing trolls that have infiltrated Government at the highest level.

They are so powerful, secretive, seductive that it'sfeared they will take over the world to displace humans as the top apex predator on earth.

And they whistle at our women as well!

Sorry Sean couldn't stop myself /forum/smilies/big_smile_smiley.gif

But it could be something else eh! /forum/smilies/wink_smiley.gif

Sean Meeghan

And did you know that Otters fiddle their expenses Phil? One of the reasons they're so hard to find is that they switch their residences so often!

The bad one

Well-known member
And there was me thinking the only thing they flip was fish. You mean they flip their residences as well?

See they're on their way to government already! Told you they'd start to take over the world.

Hold on a minute here. there might be a plus side if they take over Govt......they'll not have any of this rubbish from the EA about doing nothing over Endocrine substances in the water...it makes them fire blanks. So to gain world domination they need to breed faster than rabbits.

A Plus surely?


Well-known member
<blockquote class=quoteheader>peter crabtree 2 wrote (see)</blockquote><blockquote class=quote>but I believe our rivers are just too clean today.</blockquote>

I think people were too quick to jump on Peter. I do believe that a river can indeed be too clean. If you start pumping in water that is so clean you can basically drink it then there is nothing left for the fry and micro organisms to eat. The end resultis no small fish coming through and an ageing population of larger fish that slowly dwindle out… great news for the spezzie hunter for a couple of years…but then nothing left for anyone after that.

Second point…

Reports like this on the quality of our riversconcern me. The automatic reaction is to say EA is rubbish and they need to sort it out. However what does “improving the waterways” actually mean ? …I am not sure this report is talking about just water quality. It also appears to talk about water drainage and flow etc. I start to get jumpy when people start to talk about improving those as it often means dredging. Now I am the first to admit dredginghas come a long way in recent times but my idea of sympathetic dredging is still not always the same as the bloke in theboat who comes along and starts carving the hell out of the river bank to “improve water flow”. One of the things I like about British rivers is that you can often find nice overgrown places. They say France comes out well in the report butone of the things I hate aboutFranceis the fact they love to dredge the hell out of everything....it worries me. I see the report is compiled by the RSPBand WWF, that to me means non anglers who could have a VERY different idea of what makes a better river than any of us. It would be good to see an ANGLING body included EARLY in the process.