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Good & Bad News


We’ll begin with the good news. The Atlantic Salmon Federation reports:


“River reports coming to the Atlantic Salmon Federation from all over are touting absolutely outstanding returns. On the Restigouche, people on the shore are coming out to watch the salmon jumping as they move upstream. On the Miramichi, a pedestrian bridge below Wilson’s Camp has become a vantage point for local residents to peer into the water and watch the large salmon moving upstream. News from rivers throughout Maine, Quebec and other parts of Atlantic Canada are also reporting their best year in decades.”


Now the bad news. Meanwhile, in eastern and southern Nova Scotia, DFO’s river closures have sent anglers to Newfoundland/Labrador, New Brunswick, and Quebec to fish for Atlantic salmon, rather than to local rivers like the St. Mary’s.


Not long ago the St. Mary’s River hosted 300 – 500 anglers/day. Now that they are gone, our community is very quiet. Far too quiet for an economy largely dependent on summer tourism.


Local business folk know that summer business profit supports winter business losses, so a decline in summer profit may necessitate winter closure, or worse.


Sherbrooke Village keeps visitors in the area for a day. Salmon angling kept visitors here for days, weeks, or months, and many of those anglers & their families also visited Sherbrooke Village.


For sure there are other factors causing a decline in tourism, such as the weak US dollar, fuel prices and so on, but tourism reports never mention river closures.


What makes this situation ridiculous is that the St. Mary’s river salmon population has shown steady improvement for six years, and there is absolutely no justification closure of our live-release salmon season and pool closures.


I guess that’s also the good news – the salmon are here because they don’t know they aren’t supposed to be!


Robert Murphy of Stillwater has a large trout fly that has proved very reliable, regardless of how it is presented – wet, dry, or trolling. He’s kindly shared it with us, and I think you’ll agree that it is an unusual fly. Since it lacked a name, we call it the Murphy fly.




Thread:                      Black

Hook:                          Mustad 3399 Hook size 2

Tail:                             A few brown hackle fibers

Body:                          Natural deer body hair, clipped to a rotund shape

Wing:                          A very small sprig of coarse black hair such as black bear

                                    with peacock herl over, sparse

Cheeks:                     Jungle cock, long

Hackle:                       Brown cock, collar-style



Head:                         Black


Please send comments and suggestions to slim@rivermagic.ca


Please stay on the line …