Fly Fishers' Republic

Environment

Periods of settlement and industrialisation have seen exploitation and pollution of waterways throughout the world. This is clearly recorded in history and for some regions remains a present and major issue. It is only through the work of individuals like contributing writer, Theo Pike, their regional restoration groups, like the Wandle Trust, and national organisations like the Wild Trout Trust, and Trout Unlimited, that some of our watercourses support fisheries at all. The environmental issues implicated, action groups, and activities arising, are the focus for this section.

Wandle Restoration Part XVI

Chironomids

Aliens 2 When it comes to identifying and dealing with aquatic invasive non-native species, can there be anyone better equipped than a bunch of motivated, knowledgeable anglers? Well, sometimes, yes. But everyone has to start somewhere, and it never hurtse… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part XV

Chironomids

In autumn 2010, fear of aquatic INNS hit Britain’s national headlines when the colourfully-nicknamed ‘Killer Shrimp’ were found in Cardiff Bay, Grafham and Eglwys Nunnyd reservoirs. By spring 2012 they’d spread to the Norfolk Broads… Continue reading


Wandle Restoration Part XIV

Chironomids

Trout tank trilogy: part 3 24 February Remember that trout habitat chart from the Wild Trout Trust’s “Survival Guide” in my article last September – with recommendations for the structures, depths and speeds of water preferred by trout at different stages of… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part XIII

Chironomids

Trout tank trilogy: part 2 21 January The trout eggs started hatching today! There’s an almost-metallic tang in my nostrils as I flip the lid of the aquarium for its morning inspection, with a rim of white foam on the… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part XII

Chironomids

Trout tank trilogy: part 1 17 December The tank arrived this afternoon. The door-bell rings, and there’s Gideon with trout tank and beer chiller number 20, the last spares from the “Trout in the Classroom” project this year. After al… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part XI

Chironomids

Trout and Salmon in the Classroom Apparently, education can be a tricky business at the start of the 21st century. Health and Safety, those three little words we were talking about last month, don’t just mean effort and administration for… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part X

Chironomids

Staying Safe Health and Safety. Who’d ever have thought that those three little words – so caring and friendly – could strike such terror into the heart of someone who wants to Get Stuff Done? But at the start of… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part IX

Chironomids

Zero tolerance and the art of urban river cleanups This month, let’s start our thoughts about rivers with a little word association. What’s the link between a river full of rubbish, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and the Big Apple, and an… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part VIII

Chironomids

Rock-turning for experts When you picked up a fly rod for the first time, there were probably several things you never thought you’d learn to do – and that’s if you’d even heard of them. First, there was certainly the… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part VII

Chironomids

Cracking the code In days of yore, O Best Beloved, there were many ways of measuring the quality of a river. There were chemical scores, apparently, and there were aesthetic scores, and there were biotic scores aplenty. But there still… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part VI

Chironomids

Getting to know your river So, you’ve identified a river you’d like to work on. Since we last spoke, you might even have started making your first approaches to some of the people we mentioned last month. Yet now, through… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part V

Chironomids

Who to talk to For anyone who doesn’t like lists, it’s probably best to look away now. But for those of you who don’t mind too much, read on… This month, I’ve tried to distil some answers to one double… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part IV

Chironomids

A river of your own “Even in the remotest corners of the British Isles, our wild trout are under threat. Housing estates, conifer plantations, intensive farming, municipal water supply, and a hundred other symptoms of progress damage the fragile landscape… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part III

Chironomids

How we got stuck in Jon Beer once said that it’s not always obvious where a story begins. Fair enough, he was writing about another river entirely. But let’s start the Wandle’s modern era in October 1995, when something went … Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part II

Chironomids

Meet the Wandle Ever since I found I could catch a fish on a fly, I’ve been mesmerised by the ambiguity of chalkstreams. On the one hand, there’s the natural mystery of where all that water comes from, literally springing… Continue reading

Wandle Restoration Part I

Chironomids

Take me to the river I’ll start this column with a bet. If you’ve hit upon a site called Fly Fisher’s Republic, then cast around its links for long enough to find this article, you’ll be almost as fanatical about… Continue reading