THIS coming weekend will be the last in the brown trout season on Yorkshire rivers which closes at midnight on Monday, September 30.

Fishing for brown trout may still be available on enclosed waters where the season is not observed but it is best to check club rules before commencing fishing.

At the time of writing, the local reaches of the River Aire are in a good angling trim, running slightly above normal and quite clear.

This may change by the weekend with a forecast of spells of heavy rain, some of which may be thundery.

Sport on the river has continued to be fairly good with plenty of trout falling to the fly or the bait.

Specimen fish are keeping out of the way as they seem to have done more or less since the season started and a 900g fish or better has been a good fish this year.

Grayling and small chub have been turning up in catches and anyone fishing the maggot has also attracted plenty of minnows.

Speaking of which, has anyone noticed how the size and quantity of minnows in the Aire has been decreasing in the last few years?

At one time, the river was famous for the vast shoals of minnows it contained, many of which were over 75mm in length and quite a robust little fish.

Naturally, with so many minnows in the river they could be a nuisance at times and if you was catching them one after the other, it was a clear sign that there was no bigger fish about.

Nowadays there are far fewer minnows around and the average length is probably nearer to 50mm with just a few managing to attain a length of 75 mm.

Whether increased predation is the cause of the decline is debatable. Pollution is unlikely but maybe increased frequency of severe summer flooding may contribute to big losses and far fewer fish living to full maturity.

The pegs for the Skipton Angling Association river match on Sunday, October 20, are quickly being reserved with just three remaining at the time of writing.

If anglers wish to fish the match then contact Simon Chenier ASAP to reserve a peg.