As anticpated is was a long day at the Avon smolt trap with 1750 salmon and 40 trout processed today, by far our highest catch so far. There were 1172 salmon in the 6 ft trap and 578 in the 4 ft. 11 recaptures from the 100 marked smolts yesterday gave a overnight recapture rate of 11% – there was obviously a decent run of smolts down the Avon last night.
A couple of lovely sea trout smolts from the trap today. We are still not seeeing a lot of trout; the catch is dominated by salmon but we are seeing more smolting trout now.
This little salmon parr had some damage to its mouth and signs of fungal infection
May is always a time of year when fungus can be seen on fish and there have been a few reports of adult salmon in the river with blotches of fungus. The Brae ghillies also reported finding several moribund parr and smolts with fungus growth around the head. I went to look at one this afternoon. It was dead by the time I got there but the fungal infection around the starboard pectoral fin and gill can be seen in the photo below.
A lovely but deceased wee smolt with fungal infection around the right pectoral fin. Aside from the fungus there were no signs of damage to the fish. Smolts undergoing major physiological changes in preparation for life in salt water and they can be quite susceptible to fungal infection. We need to keep an eye on the situation and I will consult with colleagues about this but the presence of a few moribund smolts at this time of year should not be a major cause for concern
This large adult mayfly landed on Polly’s hand at the Avon smolt trap yesterday. We thought it was a Late or False March Brown but we have been told by an expert that it is a Large Brook Dun, an impressive beasty.