Monday 6th April                                      
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      A beautiful spring day, which would have been an ideal time to hold a ladies wet T-Shirt competition, because aside from several Pike caught, not a lot of entertainment was had. When boredom set in, many of the full house of anglers and danglers resorted to the lazy feeder approach with little reward. One lad on the gusher was seen to be doing very well catching lots of spratt sized Rudd and Roach on a whip.
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     There is still a mighty lot of water coming downstream and there seems little chance of the levels receding. You'll still need wellies to walk under the bridge but there is some good news. Local Polish angler, Robert Cilindz has been across the lake with a fish finder to see thousands of fish sitting in the deep hole at mid water. This is another sign of an imminent move.
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     I'm off to Elphin this evening to see the final day the county Fleadh (smelt right this time?) - yesterday was a great night out, with superb musicians entertaining a well patronised pub and that's the reason for this one and only posting today.
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    Tuesday 7th April                                      
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      What a glorious day, if only the fishing was as good as the weather. The temperature certainly felt like 20c this afternoon and the lake rose to 9.4c. I was very confident of some surface activity this evening and I was staring at the dead flat calm of the head of Lough Ree for what seemed an eternity to see just a couple of very small rises. It is conceivable that a much better stamp of fish entered the stretch, but I think maybe another 24 hours is required.
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     Those who did fish today, found the going extremely hard. The usual sprat sized fish were still present near the gusher, but elsewhere anglers opting for the feeder were disappointed. I only saw one Pike, that was a Jack of about 2lbs in a plastic bag. The young lad who caught it said it never recovered and died.
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    I've now gone three days without a dangle, so have every intention of getting up for my first early session tomorrow in the almost certain knowledge that I will have the river to myself, and if I do, I'll post a morning report at 10:00
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    Wednesday 8th Apri                               
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      I was greeted by an extremely cold fog at 7am this morning and yesterdays prediction of being the solitary angler was proved wrong, but at least the fish on offer were of a far greater average size. They were very easy to catch with several around the 4oz mark. When I reached my target of 30, I decided to try the bridge for 20 minutes. The only fish present were tiny 1/2 ounce Rudd. Never mind, things are looking up?
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     In only a few hours the Shannon and it's most popular inhabitants - the Roach, have arrived in numbers on the hot stretch. Jed, James and Michael from Drogheda, had some good fish up to just under a pound, along with a few Rudd of similar size. The odd Pike was caught, but not over 5lbs.
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    The temperature zoomed up to 10.3c in the last hours before dusk and there is no doubt that tomorrow will see the best silver fish returns of the spring so far. I'm quietly confident of some larger Pike following the shoals from the lake. It's also worth noting that the barometer is dropping, and this combined with a light southerly wind will aid fish into feeding.

     My evening session didn't start until 19:45 when I decided to ambush the Roach coming through the bridge, well that was the plan anyway. Ambush may seem the wrong choice of words as they obviously swam straight passed me up to the Drogheda lads who continued to catch good quality fish. I did manage 9 with the best going 6oz before the fading light called time.
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     Congratulations to Damien Rooney who weighed in a new P.B. this morning at 8 lbs 3oz. Mother and daughter are doing well and Damien was not out fishing tonight, but just walking the bank with his tackle!

     ...and finally, April 8th is traditionally Swallow day, and right on cue I saw many arriving from the south. I also heard news of a Cuckoo calling in Tuam!
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    Thursday 9th April                                   
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      I was out soon after dawn to see if there was any evidence of Roach getting more excited than myself at that time of the morning. It was very cold, and although the gusher was steaming with a good flow of hot water coming out, I couldn't find any larger specimens. I did 4 swims each for about 30 minutes or so with varying degree of success. The gusher performed best with 13 fish up to 4oz with odd Rudd and Perch making up the numbers. The bridge was the least productive where I drew a blank. 
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     I'm sure any half decent angler who arrives today will do extremely well. The water temperature peaked at 10.4c which is as good as 51f, the magical figure to get the fish moving. After the relatively cold morning, it has dropped back to 9.7
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     Click here for live temperature of Hudson Bay on Lough Ree. To see the approximate height at Lanesborough, click here - the current figure is 2.91 which means there is roughly 21cm of water on the lower level of concrete under the bridge. When the reading shows 2.70, it will be level. 
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     Plenty of fish caught by three anglers from the Killnarden Angling Initiative including Daniel Brady (any relation to Liam?) who enjoyed their day in the sun on the hot stretch. Tim Collyer arrived for a proposed Tinca session, but caught just a couple of Roach and Rudd. I sat watching for a while and saw quite a lot of activity and wished I had set my tackle up. 
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     The reason I hadn't fished this evening, was due to spending a lovely afternoon about 4 miles out on a boat with Robert Cilindz, who was showing me his 'secret' spots where he has seen much of his success. I'd recommend everyone to put a similar trip on their bucket list.

     I was very surprised to see the water temperature dropped overnight to 9.4c perhaps that is the reason for some of the larger Roach failing to show this morning?
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    Friday 10th April                                        
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      Only one report today as no one appeared on the bank until 08.30. Michael Bierne had a very good day with several Roach over 12oz and the biggest weighed went 1lb 2oz. Aiden Dooney recorded the seasons best so far with a fish of a shade under 1lbs 8oz. The Pike were very active, probably following the shoals from the lake and Michael lost a very big fish that estimated to be well over 20lbs. Luckily, later in the day he was rewarded with a fine looking 18lb fish.
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     The evening session should have produced far more with the barometer dropping very quickly this afternoon. The upstream wind made it feel a bit chilly so I chose the gusher, where for a while the sport was brisk. A Pike took my best fish of the session (about 12oz) which when released looked rather poorly.
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     The lake temperature dropped to 9c so the main run of fish is still to happen. The conditions hampered visibility this evening so it was difficult to see much movement, although it was almost certain that the stretch will have more fish as the weekend progresses.
.Michael Beirne with an 18lbs Pike caught today
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    Saturday 11th April                                   
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     This is no ordinary tub of Pinkees, were they bred by super flies or an alien insect? I bought my usual pint of from my local shop in December to go fishing on Dec. 22nd and afterwards put the left overs in the outdoor cupboard for my next session. Due to other commitments and flooding, I wasn't able to use them. On Feb 6th I went fishing again and found the tubs contents were still alive, so as an experiment, I've kept them in just to see how long they may live. As you can see, they are still with us. Has anyone any idea why they have survived?
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     This was a bitterly cold day with intermittent golden showers and, at times very high winds. Angling was extremely difficult for the few danglers that were out during office hours. 
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     It didn't get much better when I arrived a little after 6pm. The stick float was not the most pleasurable method, but I couldn't be bothered to set up a feeder. I still caught loads of Roach up to 5oz, two of which secured Pike of about 15lbs (97cm) and 7lbs for the man of the moment, - Michael Beirne. It occurred to me that it was also my maggots that caught his Roach he used as bait for the 18lb Pike yesterday! Roscommon angler Tomasz had 8 Pike whilst plugging, the best was 93cm.
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     I was last man in, but was bowled out before close of play. I think I need a shower now, but perhaps not a golden one?
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    Sunday 12th April                                      
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      Only one report again, as the angling today was well below what we would all like to expect. The considerable amount of overnight rain may have been the reason for any larger fish showing. Leigh Maitland and Larry Parkes fished the long pole at Ryan's gate and may have gone home disappointed, Leigh weighed in over 8 kilos (18lbs in old money) whilst Larry had less. There were a few netters, but the majority of Roach and Rudd were swingers, (fnnar fnnar) They were not joined by any serious anglers all morning, and packed up very cold.
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     By mid afternoon, some casual danglers have arrived, most of whom seemed to be spinning. When I went out at 7pm the last of them had vacated the stretch. My usual 30 minutes per swim approach commenced on the gusher. Two 5oz and a 15oz Roach were a small reward (yes, I weighed it) but further downstream it was grim. In fact, I blanked at the bridge.
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     This coming week, I'd like to see more rods on the bank. I honestly believe that a full house of competent anglers would provide a comprehensive view of the stretch. I can't do it on my own, because I'm not good enough and can't be everywhere at once. So if you can, please come to Lanesborough and share your good fortune with others.
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