‘You don’t know what you’ve got, until it’s gone’, sang Peter Cetera of American rockers Chicago. Unfortunately, this sentiment is all too true when it comes to the eel (Anguilla anguilla).
For years they tangled lines, swallowed hooks and snotted up trousers but today their dramatic demise is a major conservation concern.
If you catch one, please treasure it and wish it well.
This one was found still attached to a hook and line that was snagged on a tree stump that floated down a spate river until it caught the spinner of a sea trout angler. The stump lay on the ground for a good hour until this little fellow was seen moving from the mass of roots. Carefully unhooked and released, it crawled straight back into the water.