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Fishing on the Forth & Clyde Canal

Head along the Forth and Clyde for some canal fishing. Species include roach, bream, rudd, gudgeon, carp and particularly tench. Perch, pike, trout and eels are also present.

Get started with a spot of canal fishing. Roach and perch are the most common species throughout the canal, and can easily be caught using maggots, pinkies, worms or bread as hookbait. Great beginners' fishing experience.

Check our Canal Works & Boater's Updates page for details of current canal and towpath works along the Forth & Clyde Canal.

What's biting?

The canal is especially noted for its tench. Carp approaching a colossal 20lb in weight have been recorded, and Firhill Basin in Glasgow is the noted hotspot for this species. The current Scottish Carp record of 34lb 12oz was captured on the Forth & Clyde Canal in May 2010. Pike are present on most sections of the waterway.

Need to know

Only fish from the towpath side of the canal. Stay at least 25 metres from any lock or swing bridge. 2 rods max or 3 for pike fishing. Tackle shops and angling clubs can all offer good local advice and help you get the best out of your fishing. Remember that all fish caught must be returned alive.

In order to go fishing on the Forth & Clyde Canal, membership with the Scottish Federation for Coarse Angling is required.

Location tip

Try the stretch from Bonnybridge to Kirkintilloch.

man angling on lowland canal

Apply for a fishing permit

Did you know that Canal Season Tickets are free with the SFCA's Annual Individual Membership? At only £5 for an adult annual membership you can also help support and protect the future of coarse angling in Scotland.

Become a member today...

Fishing tip Use a small hook such as a size 20 and a fine line of 2lbs breaking strain.

Fishery rules:

  • All fish are to be returned to the water alive and unharmed.
  • Maximum of 3 rods (rods are not to be spaced more than 5 metres apart).
  • No fish are to be removed from, or introduced to the canal.
  • Do not leave any litter, bait or groundbait on the canal towpath. All line must be removed and safety disposed of.
  • No fishing in or within 25 metres of a lock or swing bridge or at designated moorings where so signed.
  • No fires.
  • Anglers must not block towpath with fishing equipment.

Useful links

Get your permit (opens in a new window)

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