I caught my first wild salmon in river Glass, Scotland, at the beginning of October. Although only small, its strength was incredible. I to and fro-ed with the salmon, allowing the fishing line to slacken as the fish pulled away only to reel it back in. Eventually the salmon tired and we scooped its exhausted body into our small wooden boat using a net. A four pounder, I was told. We examined the speckled scales of the gasping fish – a young male – and then we let it go.
Salmon numbers are falling rapidly. Overfishing has been heralded as a major driver of this decline.The catch and release practice in Scotland means that every other salmon caught, starting with the first, is returned to the river to help conserve numbers. Some think that fishing for wild salmon should be banned completely.