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The season is getting to an end ‒ catch statistics show increase
Interesting fishing season 2023 is about to end. This year has offered lots on memorarable moments of exitement and joy on the great fishing waters of Finland.
Fish stocks are mostly in a good shape. Especially the situation of stocks of the most common predatory species, perch, pike and zander have developed positively, when we look the catch statistics offered by Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke). In 2022 the total recreational fishing catch increased to slightly more than 33 million kilos from the less than 31 million kilos recorded in 2020. Last time total catch was bigger than that in 2006.
The total catch increased the most for zander (pikeperch) and roach. The pike catch increased from 6.5 to 8.2 million kilos, the zander catch from 2.7 to 4.3 million kilos, and the roach catch from 1.6 to 3.1 million kilos. The perch catch decreased from 11.4 to 9.9 million kilos, but it was still the second biggest in period 2008‒2022. The zander catch was the biggest in the history of the statistics.
So, the zander stocks have been strengthened still, especially on the lake area. 92 % of the zander catch was caught from the fresh water.
The situation of salmonoid stocks is not so good. In year 2023 only some 20 000 salmon passed by the Kattilakoski Rapids sonar monitoring site on River Tornionjoki. The number is clearly smaller that in former years.
Salmon fishing was still closed on River Teno. According to Luke, the status of salmon stock is still very weak. The number of individuals of pink salmon, an invasive species, have increased instead in a few years from a few hundred individuals to an estimated 130 000 – 150 000 individuals in summer 2023. Lots of effort was done to catch pink salmon, but the results were quite weak. A big weir was built in Norwegian side but it didn`t work. Pink salmon has a 2-year life cycle, so the next big run will take place in 2025. Hopefully better tricks are in use then.
Photo: Ismo Kolari
Sometimes a deep fog may suddenly appear on the fishing water. Soon you hardly can see any shores.
Looking forward to winter season
This autumn was special. The weather was warm until early October. Then suddenly wintry winds brought cold weather and snow. Soon the smallest lakes were already frozen. Because of hard rainfall in summer and autumn the water levels are now high on many lakes. Anglers must be careful when going on ice. Ice won`t be thick enough everywhere. Narrow straits, estuaries, capes and other areas where there are currents, will be dangerous places.
Recreational fishing 2022 ‒ Luke
Pink salmon ‒ Barents Invasive Alien Species
Photo on the top: Nice whitefish was the climax of a nice fishing day on River Kielajoki situated in Inari. Photo: Liisa Harakkämäki.