Bute loch closes to anglers until further notice

The freshwater louse Argulus foliaceus was first found on a pike landed at Loch Fad at the end of May.
The freshwater louse Argulus foliaceus was first found on a pike landed at Loch Fad at the end of May.

Bute’s most popular angling facility is to be closed until further notice, it has been announced.

Jimmy Poole, the owner of Loch Fad Fisheries, told The Buteman on Tuesday that he felt he had no alternative but to close the loch in order to deal with an outbreak of freshwater lice.

The outbreak of Argulus foliaceus lice has grown in size since The Buteman first reported the threat last month.

“This problem is going to take a bit of beating on a loch this size,” Jimmy said, “so out of respect for visitors and other fisheries it is time to close the loch to all visiting anglers until further notice.

“This will give me time to review the problem without worrying about it travelling to surrounding fisheries.

“I have spoken to many people about the issue and there are things that can be done to combat it, albeit that they have only been tried and tested on smaller lochs.

“My apologies to businesses that have bookings from anglers for the coming months, but I can assure you this is not an easy decision for me, and I am doing everything possible to tackle the problem.

“I would be grateful if accommodation providers could contact these people to advise them of the situation and maybe book for another time.

“My thanks to all the anglers who have supported the loch and the island over the years.”