HomeAbout UsOur LocationBusiness Hours, PoliciesBooks for SaleRiver Magic StoreFREE! River MapsFishing ConditionsNova Scotia Salmon Fly GalleryNova Scotia's St. Mary's RiverFly Tying Workshops, ContestClassic Salmon Fly GalleryBiographiesStillwater Slim on the Line ...Cordless ViseRiver Magic makes News!Links We Like

Who to Blame?


We still have no decision regarding this season’s sportfishing on Guysborough County rivers. I’m now told that June 4th is judgment day. But, should closure signs suddenly appear, the public deserves to know who to hold accountable.


First, ALL interested agencies favor an open live-release Atlantic salmon season.


There was, however, disagreement regarding the usual open season for trout fishing on our rivers if there is no open salmon season.


FOR CLOSURE: The Nova Scotia Salmon Association and St. Mary’s River Association both recommend some form of trout fishing closure.


AGAINST CLOSURE: The Municipality of the District of St. Mary’s, Eastern Sportfish Association, and Mulgrave & Area Lakes Enhancement Association want no closure.


We must recognize that our disagreement is a people issue rather than a salmon conservation issue. We all support an open salmon season where angled salmon are released alive. But if the same number of salmon are released alive as trout fishery by-catch, that’s the issue. There’s no difference to salmon conservation, except that closure of sport fisheries may be detrimental to salmon populations in the short and long term, due to factors noted below.


Some anglers feel that regulations, no matter how useless or silly, must be unquestionably obeyed. These are folks that would wear pink socks if they were required by regulation. Others have difficulty respecting silly regulations, feeling that we are already over-regulated. Some are concerned about the social and economic impact on our rural communities, others not. Some are concerned about the viability and future of our local volunteer organizations, others not. Some feel that the huge discrepancy between angler observation and science population estimates is real, while some disregard “anecdotal” evidence. Many have lost their passion for angling Nova Scotia salmon streams, having opted for summer salmon fishing in other provinces or countries, leaving a dwindling few of us trying to cling to what we have. Some allow personal issues to cloud their judgment while others consider the bigger picture. Some feel that angler presence is essential to prevent serious poaching activity while others feel that effects are minimal, despite our seriously depleted government protection resources.


 All of these factors are part of this people issue that will determine our future.


We must also remember that DFO is responsible for Atlantic salmon management, both wild and farmed. Part of this responsibility is consulting with user groups, like those mentioned above. As with the cod fishery, DFO must be held accountable.


The bottom line is that it is we, the rural communities, will live with the result.


This weekend, June 4-5, 2011, is a Nova Scotia Sportfishing Weekend. All Nova Scotians and visitors are encouraged to try fishing as a way to enjoy Nova Scotia’s outdoors with no licence requirement, unless you fish for Atlantic salmon. Bag limits and all other regulations apply.

June 4th is the date for the 10th Annual Fishing Derby, sponsored by the Sea Shore Volunteer Fire Department. The derby is at Fisherman’s Harbour Lake from 8 am – 12, with hot dogs & refreshments available. Wheelchair accessible.


If you are a fly tyer in Pictou County, chances are that you’re a member (or alumnus) of veteran Parker Wong’s winter fly tying group in New Glasgow. He’s mentored many of us. The Royal Coachman being one of Parker’s favorite trout flies, here is his dry fly version.


The Royal Coachman Dry Fly


Hook –                       Mustad 94840, size 8 - 14

Thread –                    Black

Tail -                           Golden pheasant tippet

Body –                        Peacock herl, red floss and peacock herl.

Wing -                        White duck quill segments

Hackle -                     Coachman brown cock dry fly hackle

Head -                        Black thread finished with ProLac head cement


 Please send comments and suggestions to slim@rivermagic.ca


Please stay on the line …