Robbie Reid from Dublin won the Dr Michael Kennedy Award for Mullet of the Year. Robbie won the award for catching a Thick Lipped Mullet weighing 3.23kg at Rosscarbery, Co. Cork on the 5th of September 2020. The award is named after Dr Michael Kennedy, a pioneering fisheries biologist and one of the founders of the ISFC, had a lifelong research interest in mullet species. The Kennedy Award is for the best specimen (highest percentage of the record) and/or a new record of any of the three mullet species for that year.
Ronan Doherty from Dublin won the Best Length Specimen Award for catching a Sting Ray measuring 117cm in length at Castlemaine Harbour, Co. Kerry on the 18th of September 2020. Length specimens are commonly recorded by anglers since originally introduced by the ISFC in 2011 and this award is for the longest length based specimen in 2020 (% of the threshold length).
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic anglers fishing in Irish waters in 2020 caught hundreds of large fish according to the just-published Irish Specimen Fish Committee (ISFC) report. One new record was set and over 300 exceptionally large fish of different species were caught by anglers from venues throughout Ireland. The main species were shark species like Smooth-hound and Spurdog and, in freshwater, Pike and Brown Trout dominated. All fish were caught, weighed, measured and released.
Details of all these fish and current Irish record fish are in the Irish Specimen Fish Committee Report 2020, which has just been released. The Irish Specimen Fish Committee, which is supported by Inland Fisheries Ireland, is an independent all-Ireland voluntary body which verifies and records the capture of large fish caught on rod by anglers in freshwater and marine waters.
The Irish Specimen Fish Committee report is available on the ISFC website www.specimenfish.ie or from the Inland Fisheries Ireland website http://www.fisheriesireland.ie/. Hard copies of the report will be available in mid-May.
Anglers both at home and abroad will be reading the report carefully to plan future angling trips to catch the big fish in Ireland.