Ireland is located on the western extremity of Europe and for many years has been hailed as one of the world’s premium angling destinations. Historically, Ireland was noted for its salmon and trout fishing, but it has now developed an excellent reputation for the quality of its pike fishing. There is no statutory close season for pike in Ireland and anglers may fish for pike all year round. Pike are now one of the most highly sought after sport fish species in Europe and North America and there has also been a huge increase in the popularity of pike fishing among Irish anglers. Ireland boasts thousands of lakes (Loughs) and several thousand kilometres of pike bearing rivers and canals which are largely underutilised. The availability and quality of fishing means that Irish pike angling can satisfy the expectations of specialist, experienced and novice anglers alike. Conservation measures have been put in place recently to ensure the quality of pike fishing into the future.
Pike (Esox lucius) are the largest of the freshwater predators and are abundant in all Irish watercourses from small to large loughs as well as rivers and canals. Irish pike grow quickly and can reach up to 20 Kg. (over 40 lbs.) on some Irish waters with fish of 10 Kg. (over 20 lbs.) being quite common in many of our lakes and rivers. Pike are opportunistic feeders and prey on small fodder fish such as roach, rudd, eels and hybrids. Its physical make up - the long enamelled green mottled body, the great head with its huge eyes and large mouth armed with a fearsome array of teeth makes the pike an efficient hunter. The sporting qualities and hard fighting nature of the wild Irish pike are some of the reasons that this fish is so sought after by sport anglers.
Ireland as a Pike Angling Holiday Destination
Ireland has quality pike fishing to offer the visiting angler and a supporting tourist infrastructure which will help you to catch that pike of a lifetime. Ireland is now readily accessible by sea and air from both UK and mainland Europe. The availability of low cost air and sea fares enables visiting anglers to tailor their visit and maximise their fishing time. Pike anglers visiting Ireland often target our huge network of pike lakes, many of which are concentrated in the Shannon and Erne River Catchments on Loughs Derg, Ree and Erne. Many fishermen love to tackle the lake fisheries from a boat – and hiring a cruiser is the ideal way to move from site to site. You can also hire a dinghy and outboard to get to the shallower areas and smaller tributaries. A good range of deadbaits suitable for pike fishing is available from tackleshops from near most of our marinas.
Pike taken on Lough Erne from a Wexford Class cruiser, June 2014