Salmon fishing on the River Tay
Tay Salmon Fisheries Company is one of Scotland's largest salmon and trout rod fisheries
From the mid-1700s to 1996, salmon netting on the River Tay was big business, hand-in-hand with the towering reputation of the river and its tributaries for fly fishing. Dwindling stocks led to a 99-year ban on netting, yet the Tay Salmon Fisheries Company, established back in 1899, remains as one of Scotland’s largest salmon and trout rod fisheries.
These days it is focused squarely on sustainability – fishing is now for leisure rather than exports. ‘Spring used to be what the Tay was famous for,’ explains fishery manager Simon Clarke.
‘Our 100% catch-and-release policy for spring salmon will certainly have helped, but it’s more about how long salmon stay at sea. It tends to go in 15-20 year cycles, so we’re hoping for a few more years of excellent fishing.’