Last night we had the pleasure of hosting Pat O’Toole on your new Podcast. I was truly fascinated by everything this man had to say, from the history of the River Boyne to the current struggle they are facing with having to navigate the seemingly endless red tape. I hope you joined us last night, it is very much worth watching and I will be uploading later in the week to YouTube. But there is a goal behind all of this, there is a much bigger mission behind the podcast than just trying to provide entertainment and some fishing tips here and there.
So this blog is going down a different route than the previous writings, it is to a degree a bit of a mission statement for the podcast. The mission? It might sound naive but it is to try and bring everyone together and get some movement in the right direction, to really save our fishing, because like it or not folks, its now or never! We can keep researching it to death, trying to find the reasons behind the problems, but why not take some action right now and try everything we can to save the thing that brought us all here in the first place. We all have our own opinions of what the problems are, there certainly is a big list to go through but that isn’t going to fix it.
We have to to take the first step, we have to get in and do the work right now. How can we go and petition for all these other problems to be sorted out when we want to sit back and simply reap the rewards. I truly believe that as participants in nature we have to do our bit first, we must do every single step we can to help our rivers and lakes before we can go pointing the finger at others and blaming them for the decline of the fish stocks and the reason fishing is dying out. Believe me, this is not an overnight fix, it is not going to be easy, its going to take a lot of work but it has to be put into action immediately. A bit of hard work and you will start seeing results, I can guarantee that! Start thinking of the fish and not the fishermen, do the work to benefit the habitat and not the angler.
Pat spoke of how they did the work on the river as a community, they brought all the clubs together, they involved the landowners, businesses along its banks, for those who saw the photos they involved children joining in with the work. It was a collective effort, even those who had no interest in fishing became involved, because the river is for everyone to enjoy. The community aspect is missing entirely from fishing in 2018, across all aspects whether its Game, Coarse or Sea. It’s full of secret societies, groups, clubs within clubs, them’uns and us’uns. Go to a fishing exhibition and you see these groups, they cant talk to them because they fish using a certain brand or I cant talk to him because of something they “apparently” did 30 years ago. Wake up everyone, its holding the whole thing back, its killing fishing! We can only fix this if we do it together and that means helping each other. When one club approaches a Governing body it has little impact and really is a waste of time, just imagine what would happen if every club, fishery owner and fisherman did it all together, maybe there would be a future.
Even with the tough conditions this year I enjoyed every day on the riverbank, I got to go back to Canada which is something I always look forward to, but, do you know what the absolute highlight for me was this year? It wasnt about numbers, it wasn’t catching a fish or making a cast. The pinnacle of the year was being able to take my two girls along the banks of the river and show them all the places where i fish, just like the first time my dad showed me. Telling them the names of the pools, funny situations I had got myself into when fishing certain spots, showing them the wildlife, Mollie even made a complaint about the sheep not cleaning up after themselves, the absolute highlight of the day was the two of them seeing Salmon jumping, I wish I had of taken a photo to capture the excitement on their faces and how something so simple got them asking all about the fish. That was worth more to me than every salmon this season. Rivers and Lakes are not just for fishermen, everyone can enjoy them, waterways support so much more than just our precious salmon and trout.
A viewer of the podcast sent me in a message after the episode with Harry. It was based around a comment I had made about the salmon and sea trout fishing I used to enjoy only 10 years ago, the punchline of the message was that another “10 years is a scary thought” if we continue to do nothing.
I hope you noticed how much I used the word “we” and that is for good reason. It’s about all of all us, we all have to do it together, whatever it takes. Research is procrastination in disguise! Stop pointing the finger and hoping for the miracle cure, it’s not going to come. We have to make it happen, give nature as much help as we can give it, before it really is too late.
Thats it guys, that’s the podcasts mission, if one person takes action from any episode we put out then it is mission accomplished, I hope it impacts a lot more. When you see viewers from all over the world joining in on the show and sharing their ideas it gives a glimmer of hope, a sense of community, we can learn so much from other parts of the world and we need to do it together! Keep sharing, keep sending in your ideas, get in touch and let us know who you want to see in the chair, it is your show!