1st proper silver smolt today

The warm spring weather yesterday must have thawed some snow as the Avon, and the Spey mainstem both rose a few inches overnight. The Avon temperature was also up at 7.2oC. With spring advancing we expected to find a few fish today and we weren’t disappointed with five salmon in the trap, the highest catch so far but these are just the forerunners.

The first silver smolt in the Avon trap this. So far the other salmon caught have been presmolts - parr marks still visible with a silver sheen developing. Thsi smolt was 142mm, a big smolt. I was very tempted to take a scale sample for aging but we sample every tenth fish and to deviate from that just introduces bias into the sample.

The first proper silver smolt in the Avon trap this. Note the black edge on the tail fin. So far the other salmon caught have been presmolts i.e. parr marks still visible with a just a silver sheen on the scales. This smolt was 142mm, a big one. I was very tempted to take a scale sample for aging but we take scales from every tenth fish and to deviate from that just introduces bias into the sample.

We can expect the numbers of fish trapped to increase rapidly from now on – dependent on river height.

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