Novar Fishings Regulations

Wild Fisheries Reform

Following the Wild Fisheries Review, Marine Scotland is now progressing with a program of Wild Fisheries Reform, including a package of Conservation Regulations.

All Scottish rivers/districts have been allocated to one of 3 grades each with their own recommended management actions. The River Alness has been designated as Grade 1 for 2017: in these rivers, exploitation is considered sustainable and not additional management action is required, but this is reviewed annually so we cannot become complacent.

From 2017 there is a requirement for a Conservation Plan produced by the District Salmon Fishery Board, it's therefore important that our regulations are in accordance with the Cromarty Firth Fishery Board Conservation Policy.


Novar Fishings Regulations 2017

1. Method
Fishing is permitted by fly only. Spinning and the use of fixed spool reels is prohibited. Only single and double hooks are to be used. Only barbless hooks, or hooks with flattened barbs, can be used up until June 30th. Maximum hook size for low water is size 8.

2. Catch Returns
A catch return should be made to the Novar Fishings Partnership immediately after the expiry date on your permit.

3. Beat Rotations
The Novar Fishings beats are to be fished according to the rotation provided on your permit. Rods will change beats at 6:00 a.m. each day and rods will change from upper to lower halves of the beat or vice versa at 1:00 p.m. Fishing from 2:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m., and from midnight on a Saturday to 6:00 a.m. on a Monday is strictly prohibited.

4. Novar Fishings Conservation Policy
The Novar Fishings Partnership has set a target that at least 80% of the annual rod catch should be returned safely to the water with a minimum of harm. In order to help achieve this target we ask all anglers to adhere to the following regulations:

Up to 30th June

  • All migratory species (multi-sea wintered salmon, grilse, sea trout and finnock) caught before 30th June must be returned i.e.100% Catch and Release.

After 30th June

  • All salmon over 30” / 76cm (about 10lbs) must be returned.
  • All coloured fish must be returned.
  • For lets of 1 to 2 days - All salmon and grilse must be returned i.e. 100% Catch and Release.
  • For lets of 3 to 6 days - A maximum of one salmon or grilse may be killed (i.e. salmon/grilse under 30” / 76cm about 10lbs) per angler during the period of let (non-transferable).
  • Valid carcass tags must be carried by all anglers with your permit, and any salmon & grilse killed must be carcass tagged, and tag details completed immediately in the Catch Return section of your permit.
  • No more than one sea trout of ≥1½ lbs to be retained per angler per week.


5. Gyrodactylus salaris Declaration
As part of our biosecurity measures to help protect our fisheries from the Gyrodactylus salaris parasite, all anglers will be required to complete a declaration prior to commencement of their fishing.
6. Other
All footbridges and walkways are used by anglers at their own risk. The speed limit for vehicles using the Novar Fishings access roads is 20mph. Dogs should be kept under control at all times. Open fires are not permitted.