Another trip south to check the smolts traps this morning. It was yet another chilly day, has there been a warm day this year? But the burns had dropped and the traps were fishing fine.
There were 11 salmon smolts and a single trout in the Truim trap, hardly worth marking such a small quantity, so they were measured, the 10th one scale sampled then released on their way.
The Tromie was better with about 150 fish in the trap, the best haul so far this year. 92 of them were unmarked salmon including quite a few small 1 year old parr, the smallest of which was 48mm. I have a lot of respect for these small parr, they have survived the first year and I know from scale reading in Ayrshire that fish like that can grow very quickly in the next year(s) to make good 2 or 3 year old smolts.
On a Monday we mark the smolts in a different position from that used during the rest of the week. This morning we were still catching some of the smolts released back upstream last Monday. The Monday release point is 2.7km upstream of the trap. 11 of last Mondays marked smolts were recaptured during the week, 5 on the next day but there were 2 yesterday and 2 today. At a few hundred metres per night this is a slow migration; there are about 130km to the sea from this point. All of this suggests to me that the main smolt run is yet to happen. The highest river temperature recorded at the traps so far this year is just over 5oC, my hunch is that there will be a big run as soon as the temperature rises.
After the smolt traps it was back to the office to work on my London presentation before a dry run this afternoon. I have some work to do now with some final tweaks but almost ready to go.
And to end another busy day I was shown a video in which I was named checked; several times, by Hilter of all people. See you in court Duffer!