Bailey Payne

Essex Tench Venue!

Finally, something I haven’t done for a while, a good bit of Tench fishing, I will probably spend the rest of my time until the Rivers open in around a month, hunting some Tench! I mean, they are an incredible species, no matter the size. I have joined BDAC for the season, they hold a number of waters and rivers around the county and thought I would have a little look around a few to see if it would be worth it for me, especially since I don’t know any day ticket Tench waters, their lake Parsonage Farm, really appealed.

Parsonage is an interesting venues, holding good numbers of Tench, averaging between 2-3lb. Nothing huge, but great sport from a lovely Fish. I headed there for the first time, with the cold weather still continuing, a cold wet start, and staying cold and wet while I was there, without a good place to put my brolly because of the wind, was safe to say I was quite wet and cold! Surely this couldn’t be Tench feeding weather, and clearly others thought this was the Lake was quite empty!

My tactic, sit under and hold the brolly down in the wind, and sit on a little hybrid feeder with Tincaberry groundbait rotating from corn and small Tincaberry boilles on the hair-rig. Using my trusty 8ft 1oz quiver, I was hoping to get a good bend in the rod, and my aim for this cold day was just to get off the mark on the Lake with one Tench! Surely achievable!

The first chuck of the feeder just past the reed bed, resulted in a few knocks and taps, certainly building confidence, and I was expecting a quick start, however these soon died down after 15 mins or so. Recast and rebait! Making sure to keep a steady flow of groundbait hitting the same spot, I was hoping this could trigger the Tench to feed on my spot, or just encourage one!

Second cast caused for more excitment with the tip being teased round slowly, and a Fish was on! However, little fight came from this Fish, surely not a Tench, at least not of any size. Up popped from the depths a nice Roach/Bream Hybrid I suspect. A lovely fish to catch, and at least I haven’t blanked!

Catching at a new venue, even if it isn’t the target species, always adds some confidence. I went in for the 3rd cast with all that confidence, hitting the same spot again. And this time, a much more encouraging bite, as the tip ripped round. This time it was a much better Fish, with is straight away taking line from my reel. This must have been a Tench. I encouraged the powerful Fish away from the main threat of the reeds with little resistance, I suspected it was a Tench on the smaller side, however I was not sure what to expect, I got the Fish into the open, and started bringing him in, taking line quickly off, until the Fish shook the hook! Gutted! Always horrible to lose the first good fish from a venue, especially when it was your target species.

In sync with losing this Fish, the rain seemed to have picked up a bit, along with the wind, and made for a miserable very uneventful next hour or so. I was almost close to the bring of how cold and wet I could be. I had a feeling I would get one more chance as the morning went by, with the rain slowly stopping, and temperature seemingly warming up. I continued to persevere with the spot I chose, despite no further bites, although indications and the odd liner where present, to keep slight hope.

I took the quiet spell to have a texting chat with a few friends on how the session was going. Clearly, the Fish may have been insulted with me feeling calm enough to do some texting! And from seemingly nowhere, the tip smashed round and my rod headed off my lap towards the lake. It’s bites like this why I always opt to have my rod on my lap! This Fish felt much bigger and better than the last one I lost, and really went on a steam towards the reeds! I dipped the rod tip down into the water, and pumped the line to stop the charge, the Fish soon turned around, and got into open water again, having the odd run of energy. But soon I managed to get it’s head up and to get it to gulp some air. This was a Tench too, a nice one. I find the first gulp of air while fighting a good fish is always a good turning point. I soon managed to scoop the net under the fish. And instantly sat back with relief of managing the target species. A lovely Tench, with a tail much bigger than it’s size, as it weighed in at just under 3lb.

I was happy to end it on this Fish, I packed up and spoke to the few other brave anglers on the lake, and sought advice, although it was a tough day for everyone, a few Tench where caught when I left, it was nice to have contributed one! Hopefully in my next trip, I can get a few more, in maybe some nicer weather, although looking at the forecast while writing this, I don’t think I’m in for much luck!

Tight Lines all…

My Rod:

Bait Choice:

Bailey Payne

Spinning for Success

Myself and Tom both took a Thursday off, and headed down to the local res! A fairly known one in the world of trout fishing.. Hanningfield! Our aim…a few rainbow trout though the res is known to have very large Perch to around 5lb! We were walking around the dam on this session, trying a variety of spinners. And just a good old chinwag like myself and Tom always have while fishing.

The tackle for the day – Rigged & Ready X5 Rod!

We started having a chat to the rangers by lodge, and having a cheeky look at the spinners on sale there, and even got one or two for our session. Quickly setup and we started our walk along the dam wall.

The weather started horrible, strong bitter winds didn’t make the day very comfortable, and we worked out way down to a bit of a cove out of the wind, and we’re joined by a family of geese.

I’m sure they found out spinning technique comical! I varied retrievals but made sure it was still spinning well, in hope I would nab one, and it wasn’t long in the little cove I did! Nothing special, but my first lure caught rainbow! So was a nice moment!

We soon took a lunch break, heading to a local pub to have a rather cold outside lunch, a beer and a burger! And to discuss the morning and our afternoon approach.

Clearly the beer got the better of us, as we failed to catch another fish between us that day, and still need to refine our spinning technique to increase our success!

We bumped into a few nice anglers who managed to jump on the new stock bashing and caught quite a few, while we were the other side of the res! And it was nice for the sun to eventually come out later In the afternoon.

Tight lines all…

Bailey Payne

Why has April fished so hard?

Well, today’s blog covers a session on 24th April 2021. On this cold start yet sunny day, I took fellow blogger Tom Baird down to Hockley Angling Club, he was eager to try it given the success I have had recently contributing to the Species Hunt. However weights of fish had been very hard fought. We setup on the far side of the lake in pegs 11 and 12, Tom in 11 for hopes of a Barbel.

I started a main line at about 8 metres, feeding my usual micros and special g mix. With soft expanders on the hook, I also brought a pint of maggots with me just for a bit of chopped maggot down the margin. I fed through the whole session the odd pinch of maggot in my plumbed up margin line. But the focus at the start was getting the bream/Crucians going on the main pole line. After a while of nothing on expanders, I swapped over to maggot on the hook, something I rarely do for bites on this lake. But I eventually started to get a few fish. Surprisingly when I did get a bite on maggot, it took a while, and the fish was of good quality, with lift bites being the main culprit with a skimmer of 1lb on the end most times. However, it was very slow. One Crucian decided to feature, which again was odd. Usually I will be catching them constantly and regularly catch over 10-15 Crucians.

I opted to focus on the margin line, I had fed a nice amount of maggot over the period of maybe a few hours and it was worth a look. With a chunky roach falling first, however a few more decent roach came, but the line soon faded away.

I started putting in pots of chopped maggot, only small pots, just to see if I could trigger a better fish into feeding, maybe a knick a Barbel which lives in this venue. Or even a better bream in the margin, anything really! I did eventually lift into something much better. One of the old warrior Ide’s stocked in the lake.

This was a great catch, especially since a lot of us thought they were fading away on this lake. Although this Fish has caused quite the speculation of claims of possibly being a Chub. I have done a scale count to get 56, which is way out of Chub territory. The lake also has no history for Chub, so I am fairly sure this is an Ide.

I ended on about 10lb of Fish, just under. Which is awful for this time of year on this lake. Tom in this time, unfortunately only managed one small Perch, of course, I feel awful, it’s never nice to bring someone to a venue and them to have such a poor experience. Everyone else on the lake struggled as well, with my Dad only managing around 5lb, and not many fish being caught at all.

What has contributed to this poor showing? The cold starts and brightness we seem to have had all through April? However, with the bright warmer days, the lakes have had a lot of new attention, who haven’t been afraid to shovel the bait in, especially when it is fishing hard, could this have put the Fish off? Or a combination of it all? What’s been your experiences through April? Have you found fishing to be harder than usual?

Tight lines all…

Bailey Payne

Margin Fishing for Bream?

This session I headed back to my club lakes – Hockley Angling Club and back to my preferred lake, the left/middle lake. And for a change headed to an old peg I used to love…peg 18. This peg gives you two islands at easy reach on the Pole, that I believe the bream live, and stay to bread, the main question there is whether the bream will feed or not. If they do, you can easily hit over 60lb of nice 1-3lb bream. If not, you will very much struggle! I have heard the bream have started to have a spawn in this lake too with the little bumps starting to appear on them, and they can be really aggressive feeders in-between their spawning.

For bait, I went for my special G groundbait dusted over some micros, dead maggots and soft 4mm expanders on the hook. Plumbed up two lines, one towards each island, as I know bream hold to each one. With the cold morning frost, and then following bright day, I opted for a very cautious approach rather than going guns blazing for them. I started feeding one medium size nugget of the pellet/groundbait mix in each spot along with an offering of some dead maggots.

First put in, and it wasn’t long before my float sailed under, with the obligatory initial Carp. A sign it’s getting slightly warming now we seem to start with a Carp again. It was a lovely mirror of maybe 7lb, and was just lumping around in front of me, luckily kept him under control with the pulley kit and slowly wore him out.

After this, I potted in another nugget on this spot just to make sure there was a bit of bait. I also started using small pot on my top kits, to put in a few lose micros rather than using my cupping kit. Just to keep a steady amount of feed entering my swim. I soon got into a nice Bream of around 2-3lb, however the day was slow and they were few and far between, with a slightly small bream of maybe 1-2lb then coming from the other line.

After this, it was very quiet and I just picked the odd smaller skimmer or Crucian off.

As the day moved towards midday, I was feeding my margin with a few dead maggots and micros, as you can get a few bream or decent perch from the margin, even some nice chunky Roach, so always worth a look.

Started off with a small Roach from the margin on a dead maggot. But then got a surprise Gudgeon, and a fat pregnant Perch!

Eventually, I lifted into a bait and the fish felt initially a lot better. And then up popped a good bream! And this wasn’t the only one about, I had a strong hold of Bream in this margin! It’s always fan catching these bream so close in!

This really helped in putting a decent amount of Fish together. Overall fishing from about 9am-1pm. I ended on about 20lb of Fish maybe, so wasn’t too bad of a morning!

Very much the biggest bream was a warrior with a few scars, but a lot of bobbles on him, so very much has been busy spawning I’d guess and needed a fill up of feed! Amazing how aggressive they can be during this time.

Tight Lines All…

Bailey Payne

Pole Fishing Basics 2: Making Your Own Rig

Welcome to the second article on Pole Fishing Basics, today we will cover making your own rig! This will include everything apart from hook lengths, personally hook lengths are one thing I may buy, just because I find hook tying slightly fiddly! However, if you wanted an instalment of Pole Fishing Basics on hook length tying, then let me know!

What you will need to get started!

So, to make your own rig, what do you need to get started? You don’t need too much before you will be away and catching fish on your own rig!

  • Scissors
  • Stotz or Shots – With Stotz you can use a Stotta to put them on and help remove from line.
  • Mono Line, I have opted for 0.12mm – This Rig will be used for skimmer/bream/crucian fishing.
  • A Float, tackle shops will have a huge choice! I make my own, and am tying up a 0.3g Rugby Ball Red Tip Float.
  • Pole Float Winder – Something to store your rig on!
  • Pole Float Rubbers – This will keep your float tight to the line.

So, Let’s get going!

  1. Firstly, you want to run the line through the eye of your float, the line you are running through will be the bottom of the rig, so make sure you run the line past the tip of the float, through the eye and then to the bottom of the stem.

2. Now, you will want to find a pole float rubber which fits your float perfectly, and then cut two bits off to have at the top and bottom of the stem of your float.

3. Take more line off the wheel and move your float up, you know are going to tie a knot at the end of your line, this will be where you will connect a hook length at the bank. Firstly fold the line back on itself, with about 2inches of line, and spin the line creating a loop at the end. Move the loop slightly to the side and now move the spun line over your loop, and then thread the loop through this circle. Wet the knot a bit and pull through to create the loop knot and then cut off the tag end. (Link of a YT video which may help more on this knot is below!)

4. Now you have tied the end, you can put your stotz on the line. To know how many stotz to use, refer to the below chart. I am using a 0.3g float, so 6 x no9 Shots will weight it done, I never do the exact, I will always do a bit less, and then fine tune this on the bank while plumbing. I will add two No 10 shots directly below the float, and then create a bulk just before the knot we made above where our hook length will be, I will start the bulk with a No 10, and then 4 No shots. Hopefully this should set my float well enough to need minimal changes on the bank.

5. Now your shots are all on, it’s time to put this on the winder, the venues I will be using this on are about 5ft deep, which equates to around 152cm, the pole winder I am using is 14cm long. So Around 11 wraps will get my depth, however, I am a strong believer in always adding more just incase, so I will round up, and do 15 wraps and then cut this further down on the bank!

6. Once you have finished your wraps, cut the line from the line wheel/spool, and now tie the same knot as we done earlier and then add this to the slider on the winder. And that’s your rig all tied!

The Finished Rig

I add small notes to the side of my winders, just so I know what is on each, with the float size, and line strength.

Now, all you need to do is attach to your pole on the bank, add your hook length (Below is my little box of hook lengths), plumb up and remove any excess line, fine tune how your float sits in the water so it’s nice and responsive, and then you’re off, however, I will cover this small section in the next pole fishing basics!

Hope you found this helpful, and hopefully some of you will have the pleasure of using your own rig to catch a few fish on your pole!

Tight Lines all…

Loop Knot Tutorial:

Pole Fishing Basics #1:

Bailey Payne

The Wonder of Crucian Bites!

In today’s blog, I am back at my club lakes; Hockley Angling Club. With my aim catching a few early April Crucians, and also adding a few more species to my tally in the species hunt, which has so far been appalling! However a day catching a few decent skimmers/bream and some Crucians mixed in, would make a good early, very cold April session.

The setup for me was back to the Pole and on my seat box, fish accurately in a spot and be able to react quickly to the small fiddly touches Crucians can give. With the water still being cold, I want to stay accurate, even more than normal, and the keep the small amount I feed, in the same area and keep the Fish tight. And Pole fishing gives me the ability to do this.

I setup and plumbed slightly over depth, it’s always my go to, just by the stem of the float. Bait for today was micro pellets with the special G groundbait dusted over them. And on the hook I was using soft expanders and some dead maggots.

With the weather still being cold, I opted to feed very lightly. You can always put more in, but you can’t take any out. I potted in one golf ball size of the micro mix along with a few dead maggots and some of the soft expanders. Then quick drink break, let it settle a bit, and then first put in, opting for a single red dead maggot on the hook. Wasn’t long before a tell tale bite from a skimmer, with the float lifting right to the body, a lovely lift bite, and the first fish of the day.

Make sure the species hunt card is in the photo!

Weirdly, the skimmers today weren’t the main feature, normally here it’s mainly skimmers with some Crucians mixed in for good measure. However, this was one of only a few. The lake recently had Crucians stocked in from a young age, along with some more Tench. So a load of small baby Crucians were coming out! It wasn’t long before they controlled the bait and for them to start coming thick and fast. However, their bites showed how shy and small they were, with bites being small sideways movements of the float, barely a touch on the float moving up or down. I introduced a method of lifting the float every 10-15 seconds just to make sure a crucian wasn’t hanging on without giving any indication, a lot of the time lifting the float up did result in the elastic coming out and a Crucian on the end!

Was a pleasure catching this small crucians, and made for good sport, although the tough bite indication was certainly difficult. However, was good to still be catching them, and it wasn’t soon before a few of the biggers one started coming!

Great to see how some of the older stocked ones have been doing, some nudging around 1lb!

However, with all this catching, the bites started slowing down in the open. I did plumb and feed a few over spots, however nothing really came from them, and in this venue, it’s always worth having a look down the margin, a lot of the Bream, Crucians, Tench and even a few Barbel will stay down in the deep margins in this lake, through the day I had been throwing a few micros and dead maggots down the edge in hope of a few better fish.

And then my float went under for the first, and only time of the day! For a tiny baby barbel!

The next bite from down the edge, was a lift bite, thinking it would be a bream, however up popped one of the baby tench! Lovely little bar of soap!

The margin then started throwing up those tell tale bites, float moving sideways, or not even moving, with big Crucians on the end, the Crucian fully took over everywhere on the peg! The margin Crucians were of a much better size than in the open, and really gave a good fight, was a pleasure to catch.

The whole session really provided a good 3-4 hours of Fishing, ending the day with a lovely 21 Crucians! Not a bad haul at all!

Very glad I am now able to go back to this venue with the lockdown travel restrictions being lifted!

For my blog on some basic pole fishing tips (With the next instalment coming next saturday (17th)):

Tight Lines all…

Bailey Payne

Small Pond Mystery Fishing

There is something about fishing a small local pond, they seem to hold a bit more mystery than other venues, mostly due to a lot of Fish being re-homed in them from people who no longer wish to keep them, this really can give a surprising variation of species in one of these little ponds.

This past Sunday I opted to have a few minute walk down to a little local pond and just spend an hour, mainly only an hour because of the strong winds making it a bit chilly! Opted for a simple setup of just fishing on the tip with a light bomb on the end, 15 inch hook length to a size 12 hook, good enough size for anything really. The approach was to fish bread flake on the hook, and feed the reminder of an old groundbait we had lying around.

The pond I fished is somewhere I have walked by a few times, and always seen a few fish topping, mostly looking like Carp, however before I even started fishing a seemingly golden fish topped in front of me, leaving a few questions to what this was, Goldfish? Golden Rudd? or possibly even a Crucian still lurking around in a small pond? Years ago, probably over 20, the pond was known to have a good population of small Crucians, whether they are pure or not with the Goldfish and Carp which have been added over the years, I won’t know until I see one.

On the first cast, it didn’t take long before a few knocks on my bread, with the warming water I guessed a lot of smaller fish maybe such as Roach or Rudd where on it straight away, however no bites developed, I did try to hit the odd tap, but to no avail. It took a good 30 minutes, before, in all honestly, I fluked a fish! I was about to freshen up my bread flake, after a few knocks I thought it was sucked off again, however on lifting, a Fish decided to take my bait at the same time! Let’s just say it was an incredibly quick strike!

This led to a full of energy small Carp being caught, lovely little Carp, as perfect as you could imagine.

The next bite after this didn’t take too long, almost seemingly one set them off, this time a much better pull round. No mistaking this for a Fish, and a certinaly more sizeable, giving a great fight on my light 1oz tip, trying to avoid the logs in the pond and other obstacles. But netted again, a pristine common carp, this time maybe just a bit over 3lb, maybe nudging 4lb.

Ignore my hair, forgot my woolly hat to control it! The wind made it out of control!

A slightly longer wait after this Fish, but another few taps developing into a bite, not pulling the tip right round, more shaking than anything, however I was in again. This time to the surprise of the trip, up popped a lovely little Brown Goldfish Fantail hybrid.

What a beautiful little fish, all these lovely pond fish where in perfect knick, not a scale out of place. Lovely to see.

While fishing here too, a guy was fishing on the other side, catching another sizeable Carp for the pond, but also, something which looked like a Crucian from distance, of course this could’ve been a small brown goldfish, however on asking, he did confirm it was a Crucian, whether true or not, certainly spikes my interest in a small pond Crucian possibly! And this little pond will have another few more visits, especially being in walking distance. The venues you ignore can often be the most fun, I would recommend to everyone to have a little look around on a map, to see if you have any small ponds you can Fish.

Tight Lines all…

Bailey Payne

Pole Fishing Basics 1: Tackle

This will be the first of a small series talking about the basics of Pole Fishing to hopefully help a few beginners find their way in this discipline and see what it’s all about a bit more. When I started fishing as a kid, from as young as I can remember, I have always pole fished, my dad was the pole/matchmen type fishermen, so that’s just how I got into Fishing, starting on a small whip/top kit section progressing to fishing long 13m poles and eventually doing a few local club matches and framing well. Of course, I’m no expert, however it’s the style of Fishing which I am most familiar with. The idea of this first blog is just to go over the few main pieces of kit to get going, we will continue to go over more setup and technique in future instalments. So lets get started!

The Seat Box

Where it all begins for this style of fishing is the seat box. Having a seatbox setup to make sure you can have everything easily to hand, from your bait to your rigs is vital as it keeps you as efficient as possible. Also a comfortable sitting position while pole fishing is even more important, otherwise you may cause yourself back problems. A lot of the time you will be sitting on this box for 6 hours, so being comfy, sitting correctly is incredibly important. There is plenty of seat boxes on the market at the moment from a varied price range. You want to make sure you have a big enough tray to store your pole float rigs and other small pieces of tackle like a disgorger, shots or stotz and a plummet. Personally, I use the Maver Signature Venue seat box, It was a fairly nice budget option, packs down into a bag so for me, someone who doesn’t have a lot of space (and drives a mini!), it is ideal, enough room on my tray, comes with a small bag on the back to store bigger pits and pieces such as pole cups and other seat box extensions like a keep net bar. Also a big side table with plenty of room to have my selection of bait, and a few snacks for myself! However, try and find the right box for yourself, a lot of tackle shops will let you look around their boxes and try a few, so be sure to ask questions and find what works for you!

The Pole

Of course, while pole fishing, you will need to have a Pole! Pole’s are fairly expensive compared to rods, so be prepared for a slight shock while looking around. However, there is some better budget solutions, middy, map, preston and browning provide some great budget poles. A lot of companies will do days/events at places, so keep an eye out, as you can get a little trial of a Pole, and see what you like and feels nice! It’s important to get something nice and light for long range fishing, but also stiff so you can react and strike to bites on time! The Pole is a great tool for catching fish in an efficient manner, set a mark on the opposite bank, and you can fish accurately all day! Feeding in an exact location, this is why the pole is used so much in match fishing, it can keep the fish in a tighter area. You want a pole which can get you to about 13m, fishing 7-10m is a nice beginner length, however you don’t have to fish as far as you can, fish may be held to a feature closer, in a future blog, I will talk about finding holes fish may be in and approaching a new swim. Using a pole also gives you great control over your float, holding it in the flow and tow on a lake or river can be key to getting bites. It is nice to get a few extras with the Pole, a lot of Pole’s will come with these, however a cupping kit (To feed balls of groundbait etc) and a selection of top kits. With a selection of a few top kits, you can fit different strength elastic to your pole. Now, what’s elastic? This is what will fight and tire the fish, in a rod, its the bend of the tip which does all the work, however on a pole, you don’t have that bend, you have the elastic, having a variety of elastic for different types of fishing and different lakes is important, you don’t want to be fishing light elastic on a lake with a load of carp, or really heavy elastic on a lake with small roach and bream, otherwise you will bump all your fish off! Setting up a pulley kit on your top kit of your pole is also a good call, if you are on light elastic and hook a bigger fish, you can use the pulley kit to pull elastic out from your end of the pole, this tightens the elastic in your pole so makes it harder for the fish to pull back so can be really helpful to control the bigger fish, I have many of good size fish which would’ve been lost if it wasn’t for the pulley kit!

Other Bits & Bobs

The above will be the big main two things you need, however here is a list of smaller and other important pieces of tackle you will need to kick start your pole fishing adventure!

  • Pole Roller – This is something for you to ship your pole back onto, so it doesn’t rub against the ground, keep it up, off the ground and easy to reach from your box. While fishing long pole, you may need two pole rollers, you can pick these from any brand or tackle shop for fairly cheap!
  • Bait/Tackle Bag – This is store your bags of groundbait, other bait, bait pots and other bits and pieces you may want in it! It’s nice to have a big bag to make sure you have everything you would need in a session!
  • Trolley – With all this big heavy gear! You may need a trolley to help lug it all around, there are some great barrow trolleys and golf club like trolleys around to chose from!
  • Disgorger – Speaks for itself, helps to get a hook out when it’s a bit out of reach, always buy plenty, and never go without one!
  • Plummet – This will help you find the depth of where you are fishing, and find the depth of the area around, so you can set your rig to be exact, a tad under depth or a tad over, whatever is working on the day!
  • Shots/Stotz – To weight your float and set it properly!
  • Umbrella Box attachment – Speaks for itself again, keep yourself dry!
  • Keep net box attachment – So you can attach your keep net to your box setup.
  • Landing Net/Keep Net – Again, you should always have a landing net, however check the rules of the water you are fishing in regards to a keep net, and if you do catch a load of fish, make sure you don’t over pack it!
  • Plastic Net Bag – A nice bag to keep your landing and keep nets in, saves a smelly car!

Of course, in pole fishing, there is a lot more tackle than this, however to get started, these are the bits and pieces which are maybe most important, and before you know it you will able to catch bags full of fish! Hope this has helped a few people on maybe the basic bits of tackle you need! Now you get to be like a kid in a sweet shop and chose what suits you best!

Tight Lines all!

Bailey Payne

Weird Fishing Facts

The sport/hobby/passion that we all share and love, is full of different weird and wonderful bits of information! Some of them may surprise you, however it’s no doubt that with so many different types of Fishing to take up in the country it leaves a few weird facts to find!

  • It’s estimated there is 2.9 million anglers in the UK! With almost 2 and a quarter anglers opting to coarse Fish, 834,000 game fishermen and just over a 1 million sea anglers. From this data you can see there is a number of multi discipline anglers!
  • With all those Anglers, the EA make a hefty amount of money from Rod licences! The EA have their own fish farm at Calverton, which produced 12.3 tonnes of Fish in 2019 which have been stocked in Rivers and Lakes across the Country! They also built over 100 “Fish Passes” helping fish move up rivers more freely!
  • Only one freshwater fish in the UK can swim backwards, any ideas?
    The Eel! What a weird and wonderful Fish!
  • How about a sea fishing fact? Porbeagle, Thresher, Shortfin Mako and Blue Sharks can all be found in UK waters! Slightly scary!
  • Like seaweeed? Well, selling this in the UK without a licence is illegal.
  • In the UK we have 38 species of native freshwater fish, and at least 12 introduced species! From Minnows and Sticklebacks to Pike and Carp!
  • In the UK we have over 1500 discrete river systems with over 200,000km of watercourses! That’s a lot of River to walk!
  • There are between 2,000 and 2,500 fishing tackle shops in the UK!
  • The humble stickleback is the most common freshwater fish in the UK, however rarely targetted by Anglers!

Hope you enjoyed this slightly different read, I enjoyed putting it together, some very weird and interesting facts!

Tight Lines all!

Bailey Payne

Farewell Rivers, for now

Well, the end of the River season is now upon us, and for me, it’s been my first full season Fishing Rivers. And I think I have learnt a lot through this, and developed further as an Angler. With the help of people reading and sending advice I am incredibly confident for next season.

Looking back at this season, I started off Fishing a local stretch of the Wid which I scouted in close, catching small Chublets. Using a light link ledger and typically bread, which has really developed into one of my most reliable baits on Rivers for a range of species. I also went to my club stretch of the Roding, and caught a few slightly better using the same tactics.

However, from here, I got my first pin, and had a few sessions trotting with it, catching small roach, perch and even a lovely Rudd! The pin is a great method to use, and since invested in an old school speedia pin I plan on using when the Rivers open again for a few more fish!

I also had great success fishing for Perch using lob and dendras in a lot of places along the Chelmer, something I will be doing again, such brilliant bites while Fishing for these Perch!

Then, I started getting into the Roach on the Chelmer, possibly the the thing I have enjoyed most is learning these Roach, and figuring out how to catch them. And amongst the way, I have had some great captures, including my 2lber! Which I aim to try and beat in the coming season.

And then of course, the first Pike I got with fellow blogger Tom, a fish I treasure, and really made me love fishing for Pike, although sadly I haven’t had one since so far!

First Pike

Sadly the Covid restrictions have really stopped my end of season Fishing on the Rivers, with the highlight been a nice Chub caught my small local very polluted River!

Lovely Chubly

Overall, some nice catches through the season along with the still waters I have fished too, although this is a River blog! Certainly leaves me aware of what my aims for next season are.

  • Another 2lb+ Roach from the Chelmer (3lb If I can!)
  • Consistently catch more Chub to a better size. 3lb Chub.
  • First River Barbel (Covid permitting, myself and Tom may have a trip to Kings Weir Fishery)
  • First River Tench
  • First Wild Brown Trout
  • 2lb River Perch
  • 10lb River Pike

I think all of these are achievable goals for the next season, and I hope to continue to learn from Fishing and from comments I get from readers. Hopefully at the end of the next season I can look back and tick a lot of these off, however this is my aim. Hope you enjoyed looking back at this season with me, and hopefully you look forward to my future River blogs.

Tight Lines…