LOCAL anglers will be shocked to learn that the River Aire features high in a recent Greenpeace analysis of river water samples for pieces of plastic.

The worst offending river was the River Mersey, which contained more than two million pieces for every square kilometre.

These include everything from straw and bottle top fragments to tiny plastic microbeads, as well as larger items such as cups.

The plastic content of the Mersey is considerably higher than in the equivalent area of the “garbage patch” in the Northern Pacific Ocean, which is recognised as one of the most polluted expanses of water on the planet.

Using the same sampling technique, they uncovered 108 pieces of plastic in the Thames, next came the River Aire with 63 pieces followed by the Severn at 42 pieces and the Trent with 35 pieces. The Greenpeace results came from analysing a total of 13 rivers.

The Skipton Angling Association’s first taster day at Embsay Reservoir was deemed to have been successful once the participants managed to overcome a brisk southerly wind which made angling difficult but was useful to keep the “flying fish” in the air.

A reasonable number of fish were caught during the day including brown and rainbow trout to around the 1kg mark, a decent tiger trout and a good number of smaller perch to around 250g.

Both adults and youngsters were happy with their catches and the winner on the day was young Charlie with a decent perch.

Sport at the second Sunset Series match on Whinnygill Reservoir showed a big improvement for that experienced at the first match a fortnight before with Russell Heaton taking the top spot with 2.155kg of roach, ide and bream.

Simon Chenier's extensive practising at this venue paid off with a second place weight of 1.355kg, whilst John Leatt was third with 795g. Michael Ickringill was fourth with 245g and Malcolm Mawson fifth with 140g.

The next Skipton AA match will be fished tonight at Embsay Reservoir and will be a fly fishing match.

Sport could be quite good as the reservoir has been recently stocked with a batch of rainbow trout including a few specimens. The draw will be at 6.30pm.