Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls (General)

by rsligi @, Wednesday, March 30, 2022, 21:47 (848 days ago)

Sorry not really Geno based, more historic info required, do not put up if thought inappropriate but there is a research project asking for national historic information of Sturgeon fish that includes the Wye and Severn most likely to occur in our Forest area.
There is nothing fishy about this request?????

I have spent considerable time with no result looking for an old photo I have previously seen of 3 gents, abt 1900 holding an absolutely massive Sturgeon caught in the Wye around Bigsweir, probably in a salmon net.
The photo did name the 3 men and there was some comment about a past relative hence this post as this site may be relevant.
I think it may have been on this site in past at sometime ?
Done all the other more likely sites with no results.
Unusual ask but any info on that photo or anything related would be helpful.

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Wednesday, March 30, 2022, 21:53 (848 days ago) @ rsligi

If you go into Photographs on this website and Blakeney - there is my photograph of Evan DAVIES with the Sturgeon. He was x Grandad William WICKENDEN of Nibley Mill (son-in-law) and lived next door to them.

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 08:30 (847 days ago) @ rsligi

If you check the Parish Records on this site for the children of

Evan DAVIES and Martha (nee WICKENDEN) (married 1895)

Evan is listed as a Fisherman - residence: Nibley

I have a photograph of his wife Martha, with their twin daughters, Janette and Sybil - born 6 April 1913)

Also on Blakeney Photographs are Sales Particulars - with include my x Grandad at Nibley Mill and

Lot 2

THE FREEHOLD COTTAGE Called "Pound Cottage"

Containing 3 bedrooms, Parlour, Kitchen and Back Kitchen fitted with Boiler, together with Garden and Piggery.

Now let to Mr E DAVIES at a rental of £7 per annum, Landlord paying rates. LAND TAX 3/10

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 09:04 (847 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

British Newspapers on Line

Gloucestershire Chronicle - Saturday 11 May 1912


While fishing in the Severn at Gatcombe, during the low water period, on Thursday morning, Evan DAVIES of Nibley, Blakeney, espied a sturgeon which he succeeded in capturing.

The fish was seven feet five inches in length, its girth was three feet, and it was estimated to weight about 180 lbs.

It is some four years since a "royal fish" was previously netted at Gatcombe.

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 09:10 (847 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

Cheltenham Chronicle - 11 May 1912


The only sturgeon caught so far in the River Severn this season, was the one which was secured at Gatcombe, near Blakeney, on Thursday morning.

It was taken taken during the low water period by Evan DAVIS.

Having set at the monster and succeeding in drawing it into his net by careful manipulation and skilful handling, he enticed it from the water, which was knee deep, to the sand, where it became easy prey.

The "Royal Fish" was seven feet five inches in length, and three feet in firth, whilst it was estimated to weight 180 lbs.

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 09:16 (847 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

Searching British Newspapers on Line, there are a number of hits for Sturgeon - another one - Saturday 8 June 1895, Cheltenahm Chronicle


On Monday afternoon while some of Mr J M BANNERMAN's men were salmon fishing in the Wye at a spot known as Martin's Pool they caught a sturgeon measuring 7 ft 7 ins long, 2 ft 10in, in girth, tail 18 in. and weight 134 lbs.

The Wye is not famed for Royal sturgeon. It is seventeen years ago since a small sturgeon was taken at Symond's Yat. That and the one caughter on Monday are the only two taken in this district in the memory of the oldest inhabitant.


** On the Forest of Dean records, Robert Walter Malcolm BANNERMAN a Gentleman of Ledbury, married in 1924 at Ross on Wye and his father was James Murray BANNERMAN, a Gentleman.

Thursday 24 June 1886

Gloucestershire Echo (a long advert)




Extaordinary Size and Quality
Worth going Twent Miles to see

ON VIEW at the Stores, 405 High St. Friday Morning

The Largest and Cheapest Supply of Fine quality ENGLISH, IRISH & SCOTCH, SALMON

Ever on sale in Cheltenham


Cheltenham Chronicle

Saturday 26 June 1937


Fishermen's Capture at Lydney

A sturgeon weighing over 500 lbs, and measuring nine feet was captured at Lydney on Monday by local fishermen.
As it is customary, the sturgeon was presented to Viscount Bledisloe, Lord of the Manor. He received it at his home in the presence of Lady Bledisloe and a number of New Zealand tourists.

In accepting the fish, Lord Bledisloe commented that he was one of three lords of the manor, apart from the King, entitled to claim sturgeon caught in local waters.

He thought this was the heaviest one ever caught in returning it to the fishermen as a mark of appreciation of their skill.

The tourists who witnessed the interesting presentation were representative of various New Zealand ambulance organisations. They were shown over the estate by Lord Bledisloe, who is a former governor of the Dominion.



Gloucestershire Echo 12 August 1941 - has another write up headed STURGEON TAKEN IN THE SEVERN ..... this one was nine and half feet long, etc. etc.


Seems British newspapers on line - holds many records for Sturgeon and where they were caught

One article Cheltenham Chronicle - Tuesday 3 August 1880 - talks about

The skin of the sturgeon is armour plated, the bony plates when boiled will be found to be of a beautiful pattern, somewhat resembling very fine Chinese carving.

They make very pretty and unique ornaments for ladies dresses.

The best caviare imported to this county is from Astrcan.

It is stated that a good cook can obtain a good dish of beef, mutton, porl or poultry from a sturgeon.


Sturgeons are frequently caught in the salmon nets in the estuary of the Severn, and could be easily brought up alive from Gloucester.

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by rsligi @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 12:10 (847 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

Thank you for all this information !
There is a group WWW.savethesturgeon
that is working with other similar groups trying to save this ancient species. There are 2 groups in Europe with the same target who are having some success.
The Wye is one of the very few UK rivers that has no man made obstructions to their spawning grounds and these fish used to occur in the Wye and several S Wales rivers and it is possible that in a few decades the offspring of the European groups may appear in these UK rivers again.
Please may I ask if I may pass this information to the above site.
Many thanks again, Rudi.

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 15:56 (847 days ago) @ rsligi

No problem sharing the information, photo etc.

Evan DAVIES was a Salmon Fisherman - as there is an article where he was 'up before the law' fishing for Salmon out of Season.

As regards you mentioning, Sturgeon at Bigweir - just have a look.

So far, can see a couple of article of catching Sturgeon at Bigsweir: Thursday 21 June 1877, Ross Gazette

Monmouth - Capture of a Sturgeon. As Mr Miller's men were fishing with a salmon net in the Wyre on Wednesday, they captured a fine sturgeon, about 9 ft long, at Bigsweir, between Monmouth and Tintern.

Chepstow Weekly Advertiser - 26 May 1860


SOMETHING UNCOMMON. James Williams, fisherman of this place, it is stated, caught a fine sturgeon, weighing about 100 lbs, recently in the river Wyre near to Chepstow Bridge.

Gloucestershire Chronicle - 20 May 1865

A day or two ago a sturgeon weighing nearly two cwt. and measuring 7ft 2 in in length and 35 in in girth, was caught in the Wye at Lydbrook

Hereford Times - Saturday 8 June 1850

Capture of another Sturgeon in the River Wye.

It doubtless will be recollected by many of our readers that, on Sunday the 30th May 1846, a large sturgeon (accipenser [/b[b]]huso) was captured near the Weir, by a man in the employment of John TOMKINS Esq., names James POSTANS. The gallant struggle of POSTANS with the fish in the native element of the latter, and its capture after half an hour's severe conflict, must also be fresh in the recollection of may.

A full account of this monster fish, which measured 8ft 6 in. in length and weighed 182 lbs. of the struggle which ensued between the man and the fish, with a pictorial representation of the fish, may be found in the Hereford Times of June 6th, 1846.

This fish, after being exhibited at the Black Swan, in this city, and 1d. per head charged to those who went to see the "monster", by which Postans realised between £11 and £12, was sold to our fellow-citizen, Mr J Baker.

We believe that, previous to this, the last sturgeon caught in the Wye was taken at Glasbury about 14 years previously.

On Saturday last, it was publicly proclaimed, through the streets, by the city crier, that a sturgeon, "far the largest ever taken in the Wye," had been captured on the previous evening at Hoarwithy, and was then being exhibited at the Sun Tavern, in High Town

Having in remembrance the renowed antagonist of POSTANS, and knowing that exhibitionists are always possessed o "the great wonder in the world", the cray was considered a "puff: and so indeed it proved. The fish weighs about 100 lbs, and measures about six feet in length, - so that it is 82 lbs. less in weight and 2ft 6 in shorter that the one captured in 1846.

etc etc.

It it stated that a sturgeon was caught in the Severn at Gloucester last week, which weighted 200 lbs.


So quite a history can be put together on British Newspapers on line

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 16:11 (847 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

I've actually found the drawing and the article of The Royal Sturgeon - from the Hereford Times 1846


It is an engraving - and says....

The above engraving is by Mr GAYLOR, of this city, whom we have pleasure in thus introducing to the Hereford Public; we shall, whenever the opportunity is afforded, publish in our columns, Mr Gayler's engravings of any object of local interest, by way of illustrating our letter press.


No idea how to attach the article to my message.

The article, takes up over a third of the page across, and runs top to bottom of the page. It obtains a popular account of the Sturgeon from Buffon's Natural History: -

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by admin2 @, Thursday, March 31, 2022, 17:02 (847 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

If you would like top send me any scan or image from another (non-copyright!) source I will happily add to the website and provide a link.



Admin 2

Wye Sturgeon Photo info pls

by rsligi @, Tuesday, April 12, 2022, 10:27 (835 days ago) @ admin2

Thank you all for your help ref the sturgeon image, it has since been submitted to the interested survey site.

The spin off of all this is > There is a web page, have a read, >> savethesturgeon << that the Blue Marine Foundation are part of that is part of a group actively trying to re-introduce/top-up the sturgeon population in Europe. This is not a hair-brain idea.

In the France they have encouraged the last few sturgeon to breed, I think about for 12 years now and some of these fish have been recorded in nets of the coast of England and hopefully will soon migrate up our rivers to breed, this includes THE WYE and SEVERN.

The Wye and Severn plus S Wales rivers are the most likely places for them to re-appear, migrating upstream in April-June on rivers that have no barriers.

Historically The WYE had many sturgeon caught in salmon nets but not for last 50 years or so (they live well past 100yrs). Being a large (very!!) fish and quite secretive I suspect that THE WYE is now to active (canoes etc) but if they get past Chepstow and Bigsweir they may soon be recorded again.

If any are seen, caught or even suspect sightings could they please be recorded to the above web page. Thanks

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