The dry, hot summer created bad river fishing

river fishingRiver fishing.Photo: Terje Bendiksby / NTB scanpix

Last year’s dry and hot summer resulted in the lowest river catch of fish in 30 years. The catch of large salmon was as much as 42 per cent lower than in 2017.

In an overview from Statistics Norway (SSB) that shows the dramatic effect of the unusual hot summer that marked 2018 on salmon and trout fishing in the rivers. About 150,000 fish was caught and that is the lowest since 1988.

“The summer of 2018 was the worst in salmon fishing in 30 years. Only 98,947 salmon were caught in river fishing,” says General Secretary Torfinn Evensen in the interest organization Norske Lakseelver.

He explains that wild salmon stayed in the sea instead of swimming up the rivers where there was little and warmer water. Therefore, he is critical of the fact that 11 per cent more wild salmon were caught in nets from the sea than in 2017. The figures from Statistics Norway also show that over 22,000 salmon were released live out into the rivers.

Despite several reports from concerned fishermen, the Norwegian Environment Agency did not measure any decline in the number of returning salmon. Therefore, no special regulations were introduced for the fisheries either. In the late summer, the weather turned around, and there was long-awaited rainfall.

“When the rain finally arrived, most of the waterways that were still open experienced a good fishing,” says Director Ellen Hambro in the Environment Agency.

The survey Norwegian Lakseelver has conducted among anglers in August, showed that two out of three respondents had fished fewer days than usual because of the heat. Several rivers were also closed during these periods.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today