The Federation of Irish Salmon and Sea Trout Anglers has welcomed a marked increase in salmon stocks returning to Irish rivers from Donegal to Kerry, with returns of fish that have not been seen for up to 15 years. 

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, the federation's National Secretary said the rise in fish numbers comes after 30 years of salmon conservation campaigns, including the 2006 driftnet ban.

Noel Carr said heavy rains last month created "an angler's dream" as it led to floods into spate rivers and allowed salmon to return in "the numbers we are now seeing".

He said a new north Atlantic agreement with fishermen, in place since 2018, has allowed salmon to be protected in their feeding grounds so they return back to Irish, American and European rivers in greater numbers.

Mr Carr said this is working after a 30-year programme and "we are delighted to see results from this".

However, he said he was giving a cautious welcome as it comes at a time when fewer anglers are fishing and there appears to be less poaching.