The Special conservation measures for wild brown trout were signed by the Minister into law in 2008. These apply to the three main lakes, Loughs Corrib, Mask and Carra and their feeder rivers and streams. The laws primarily are as follows:
All trout under 33 cms (13 inches) must be returned immediately alive to the water.
The daily limit of trout that can be retained by an angler is 4 this includes a maximum of one (1) ferox trout or brown trout over 4.54kg (10 lbs) in any 1 day. – Anglers are however encouraged to return all ferox trout alive.
An angler cannot use more than one rod when fly fishing or dapping and not more than 4 flies when fly fishing or trolling flies.
An angler cannot use more than 2 rods at any time when bait fishing, spinning or trolling from either the bank or a boat.
No more than 3 rods in total can be used when bait fishing, spinning or trolling in any boat at any time by two or more anglers.
The seasons on some rivers and the Cong canal have been amended.
These are welcome and will hopefully influence anglers attitudes to catch and kill into the future. There will be a bag limit of 4 trout per angler – more than enough – the day of killing everything you catch is gone. These beautiful trout deserve more than a bang on the head – although I, like everyone, would take one for the dinner – why not.