THE DART ANGLING ASSOCIATION FISHING REGULATIONS
AMENDED FEBRUARY 2022
The Association attempts to keep anglers up to date with information about national and local laws and by-laws relating to fishing on the Dart and elsewhere. This information is given in good faith. However, the Association can take no responsibility for errors and omissions, and it is the responsibility of individual anglers to ensure that they comply with such regulations, further details of which may appear on The Environment Agency’s website
All persons wishing to fish on Association water must be in possession of:
- The appropriate Association Ticket
- The appropriate Environment Agency Licence
- A copy of these regulations
Fishing regulations are reviewed annually and set by the committee at their first meeting in January. The Association has long been concerned about the state of fish stocks in the river, particularly the salmon component. To ensure future sustainability, whilst urging the authorities to move more effectively to combat the real causes of the decline such as habitat degradation, pollution and over-exploitation on the high seas, the Association has long adopted a conservation ethic designed to reduce exploitation in the river, until stocks recover sufficiently. The following regulations are finely balanced to protect not only the fish stocks, but also the future of the sport of angling and the Association. The committee introduces the restrictive elements reluctantly but encourages all members to adopt the conservation ethic contained therein, until such time as recovery permits relaxation of the measures to take place.
National Byelaws, introduced in 1999 restrict the taking of any salmon. All fishing for salmon before the 15th of June, inclusive is strictly catch and release.
THE COMMITTEE RECOMMENDS TOTAL CATCH AND RELEASE FOR ALL SALMON FOR THE WHOLE SEASON.
Subject to above overriding regulations, the following measures also apply: –
All members and visitors must for conservation reasons return the first salmon they catch after the 15th of June.
To facilitate catch and release, the use of barbless or de-barbed hooks is recommended. In particular the use of a single barbless or de-barbed hook is encouraged. This applies equally to flies or lures, which could be amended for the purpose. The onus is entirely on the angler to ensure their tackle is designed to cause as little damage as possible to the fish, so that all fish caught can potentially be successfully released. When limits as above have been attained than the use of barbless or de-barbed hooks is essential.
Additional local measures- some subject of local Bye-law: –
No fishing from one hour after sunset until sunrise
Prawn and shrimp are only permitted below Staverton Bridge AND only after the 15th of June. Fishing with worm or other bait is not permitted anywhere on Association waters. The use of a gaff or tailer is prohibited.
Spinning line shall not be less than 8lb breaking strain. Lures shall not be less than 1.5 inches (38mm) long including hooks. No treble hooks shall be larger than No.3. No weight shall be nearer than 10 inches (250 mm) from the lure.
2. MIGRATORY TROUT
Fly fishing only is permitted. The size limit is 10 inches (250mm) measured from nose to the centre of tail fin. No treble hook shall be larger than No.6 (Redditch scale).
No restriction on hours of fishing subject to the provision of regulation 4 (TOTNES WEIR POOL).
The bag limit is 2 migratory trout per day. Fish over 4lb should be released. RECOMMENDED BAG LIMIT OF 12 FOR THE WHOLE SEASON.
3. BROWN TROUT
Fly fishing only is permitted. The size limit is 12 inches (300mm) measured as for migratory trout. The bag limit is 2 per day. No fishing from one hour after sunset until sunrise.
4. TOTNES WEIR POOL
Members holding season tickets for Salmon or Sea Trout will be limited by the committee to odd or even dates when they may fish Totnes Weir Pool for Sea Trout. Sea Trout fishing is from sunset on their allocated date until sunrise on the following day.
When a month has 31 days (viz. March, May, July or August) both odd and even members may fish on the first day of the following month. Anglers fish from the Weir face at their own risk. There is no date restriction for fishing Totnes Weir Pool for Salmon from sunrise to sunset.
5. SALMON DAY TICKETS FOR NON-SALMON MEMBERS
Members who are not holders of season tickets for Salmon Membership may purchase one day ticket per month, at a cost to be determined by the committee, to fish for Salmon on any part of the Association water except Totnes Weir Pool.
TICKETS CAN BE PURCHASED VIA CLUBMATE –
Alternatively contact the Secretary or Treasurer.
This facility is not available for Junior Members.
6. GUEST TICKETS
Members, as a privilege of membership, shall be entitled to not more than five tickets per season, of the same or lower category as their own season ticket. Each ticket for use by a personal guest on a specific date. This at a cost to be determined by the committee. TICKETS CAN BE PURCHASED VIA CLUBMATE – HTTPS://DARTANGLINGASSOCIATION.CLUBMATE.CO.UK
Alternatively contact the Secretary or Treasurer.
Members must accompany their guests at all times on the river. Such tickets shall be issued at the discretion of the committee, which may withdraw this privilege if it is abused. Excessive use of tickets for the same guest in the same season will be regarded as abuse. In the case of Totnes Weir, if there are more than five member rods fishing then the guest should share his or her host’s rod.
7. CHILDREN OF MEMBERS
A member is entitled to take his or her child or grandchild, under the age of 18 years, to fish for migratory trout or salmon free of charge, providing that child or grandchild is a junior member of the Association and is accompanied by the member, fishes only by sharing the member’s rod and is in possession of the appropriate Environment Agency Licence.
8. VISITORS’ TICKETS
Subject to review from time-to-time visitors’ tickets will be available for purchase via CLUBMATE:-
Totnes Weir Pool
ONE TICKET ONLY PER DAY FOR FISHING FOR SALMON AND / OR SEA TROUT TO RUN FROM SUNRISE UNTIL SUNRISE THE FOLLOWING MORNING. THE SEASON TO BE THAT AGREED BY THE ENVIRONMENT AGENCY
Church Commissioners water (does not include Totnes Weir Pool, Halliwell’s, Hembury, Kilbury, Fogden’s or Lancaster’s ). LEFT BANK ONLY LOOKING DOWNSTREAM
Limited day or week salmon or Brown trout tickets for fishing from sunrise until one hour after sunset 15th of March to 30th of September.
Limited day or week Sea Trout tickets for fishing from sunset to sunrise the following morning from the 15th of March to the 30th of September.
We would ask visitors to complete a catch return and send it to the Honorary Secretary. See website for address
9. No fish shall be sold or offered for sale.
10. Fishing from boats of any kind, including float tubes, is strictly prohibited.
11. Any fish retained shall be shown on request to members of the committee or EA bailiff.
12. Neither anglers nor their companions shall be accompanied on Association water by a dog. EXCEPT HEMBURY WHERE DOGS ARE ALLOWED ANYWAY.
13. No angler will occupy a pool, stand or run for more than 30 minutes, when others are waiting to fish.
14. Anglers shall confine themselves to paths by the riverbank and not walk unnecessarily along the railway line, other than at approved crossing points agreed with the Dart Valley Railway.
15. All gates opened to obtain access to the fishing must be closed immediately. Failure to comply renders the offender liable for any damage caused by strayed stock, etc.
16. Litter must not be left on the riverbank common or thrown in the river. Take it home.
17. Lengths of unwanted nylon shall be taken home for disposal and never left on the riverbank or thrown into the water.
18. All members and their guests shall complete a return of fish caught, when requested to do so by the Honorary Secretary. Failure to comply with this rule may result in membership being withdrawn.
19. No member shall use the river for financial gain, such as paid gillie, without the prior written approval of the committee, who will only issue such approval when the arrangement can be seen to be of benefit to the Association.