The River Almond at Mid Calder weir, part of the water covered by West Lothian Angling Association who now have season permits on sale online

Fishing is exceptionally popular in Britain, with many people of varying ages taking to the rivers, lakes, canals, and shores on a regular basis.

It has in the dark and distant past been considered a predominantly male domain, but it is growing in popularity with women.

The Edinburgh Reporter will cover the sport on a regular basis.

We will include hints and tips on how to catch fish and on fly tying, information, news and reviews of local reservoirs, latest tackle reviews, offers from local tackle dealers and club news.

Experienced sports, business and news journalist Nigel Duncan will edit the column so if you wish to offer information send your emails and pictures to nigeld@nigelduncanmedia.co.uk

Meanwhile, West Lothian Angling Association (WLAA) have permits available for salmon and brown trout an eight-mile stretch of The Almond from Kirkton Weir in Livingston to Clifton Hall at the M8 Motorway near Newbridge.

The season opens on March 15 and the cost is £15. They are available on line at WLAA.org.uk or can be purchased (cheque or cash) at the first fly tying session of 2017 at Mid Calder Community Centre (opposite The Black Bull) on Monday 6 February 2017 (7.30pm).

The seven-year-old organisation aims to provide, promote and protect angling opportunities within the West Lothian area.

Members are permitted to fish using fly, spin or bait techniques and membership is open to all members of the public.

To encourage youngsters, juniors between the age of 9 and 16 can join free as part of an senior membership. All young anglers will receive their own membership card.

Weekly tickets will soon be available costing £10 and are ideal for visitors to the area. They will be available online and anglers should print them off (as you do with an airline boarding pass) and carry them at all times on the river.

John Steel, Chairman of WLAA, said: “Benefits of membership include permission to fish all association waters, insurance cover under the association public liability insurance, invitations to special events and the opportunity to contribute to projects run by the association and partner organisations.”

Watch out for three articles from small rivers champion fisherman Paul Buchanan. Coming soon.

Finally, an interesting statement was spotted by a well-known, Midlothian-based fishing tackle retailer in a recent Snowbee catalogue and circulated on social media to make anglers aware.

The statement said: “If your line doesn’t come in a Snowbee box with either two braided loops or a welded/whipping loop at either end, then it is not a Snowbee fly line.

“Being a brand leader leaves a company open to copyists and we have seen our fair share of counterfeit fly lines on the market this past year or so.”

The tackle shop boss added: “We’ve been saying this for a long time now, branded bargain unboxed lines are not the real deal. Trust your local tackle dealers who’ll only supply the genuine article.”