A fine and warm week, the river is down and the weed is up, out of the water and flowering, temperatures in the twenties most days and a slight wind have resulted in some of the best Mayfly fishing in recent years. While driving down the lane at eight thirty from a cricket match earlier this week, there were clouds of Olives and Mayflies dancing over the fields and hedge, the still air allowing them to return to the river and lay their eggs resulting in some heavy falls of spinners that all fish have feasted hungrily on. Evening fishing has been fantastic with Mayfly patterns catching most fish; some have struggled in the morning when the fish have been at their most soporific after the previous night feasting.
While eating in the garden one evening this week a similar scene was played out over our heads, as the Mayflies massed beside a Sycamore tree that stands in the corner of my vegetable plot to perform their courtship dance. In Previous years this sight has been accompanied by the whistling and whirring of Swallows and Martins as they criss cross the garden spectacularly taking the Mayflies in hundred mile an hour mid flight. This year, we have to date, a handful of Swallows, no House Martins and a handful of Swifts. In previous years up to a hundred swallows and Martins have used the stables and house eaves for nesting sometimes up to three broods in a summer. I don’t know where they have got to but they are missing out on a real feast.
I also carried out the monthly invertebrate sampling this week. Once again high numbers of Olives and Gammarus came up along with a similar number of caddis and mayflies as the last sample. There were more Blue Winged Olive in this sample, double figures, but not a significant amount.
The flight pond is warming up, and the algae blooming strong, it may be necessary to flush some water into the pond to drop the temperature, the fish do not seem distressed although they are not being fed at he moment.
All of the chickens have settled in and are producing eggs at a slightly reduced rate now that they are fed with corn. We have feasted on Omelettes and scrambled egg for much of the week and probably have a cholesterol count bordering on life threatening. But in the words of a well known Scottish comedian “ The graveyard’s full of people who’d love my cholesterol count”