Friday, 25 April 2014

Pond Fishing: Roach and Rudd on the Whip

A warm welcome to this weeks blog update.  I hope I find you all refreshed after a lovely relaxing weekend over the Easter bank holiday.  Myself I have been tempted by too many of the Easter bunnies chocolate eggs and am now on a self imposed chocolate detox.  Fishing wise I managed a few short sessions on the bank mainly targeting silvers and I will expand on the reasons for this later on in the update.

First things first and I start with the Canvas Design competition I was running on the blogs facebook page to win a free canvas of the winners own design.  The draw was supposed to have taken place on Friday but distracted by fishing and one thing or another it was not until a helpful blog follower reminded me late on Saturday evening the draw was made, thank you again Martin for your helpful reminder.  The names were numbered a random number generator was used to pick a winner and I am delighted to announce the winner of the first ever Danny’s Angling Blog giveaway was ADE GREEN, congratulations!!

I am currently in contact with Canvas Design about the prospect of running one on the Blogs Twitter account so if you are not already why not look out for this competition on there by following @satonmyperch.  From a social media point of view the blog is doing fantastic, on twitter it has just peeped over 1500 followers and on Facebook it is approaching the 150 mark.  I know we had the give away this week but as a rule I am not one who runs these giveaways to attract likes and views to my page preferring to have a low number of followers who want to be there of their own accord because they like my blog over people lured in with giveaway after give away, that’s my own personal stance on it anyhow.  I follow quite a few pages on Facebook and you see time and time again people being banned and some quite heated confrontations take place and I have to say I love the little corner of the world my blog holds on Facebook as there is always someone giving out some friendly advice and I always say to people to use the page for posting their fishing escapades and stories their fishing and in all in all updating the twitter and Facebook feeds is a part of the blog I enjoy as much as writing it and long may it continue.

Moving along and what a great Easter weekend it was, I have been making a conscious effort over the passed week or so to devote less time to the fishing and a little more to my home life as although the carp quest is yet to yield any fruit as in fish on the bank it has eaten up a lot of my time and it is something that I need to keep sight of and not get myself caught up in the quest at detriment to home life.  Striking a balance is important when it comes to fishing and is probably one of the parts I find most difficult as when I start something new or find a new venue for my fishing I can get really one minded and wrapped up in it.  I am very fortunate to have such an understanding partner who recognises when my time is too much towards fishing and reigns me in as such.  This weekend however I managed to get out on the bank a few times but was determined to get out with the family.

One such trip was too the local park where we fed the local duck population and was really happy to see my first clutch of ducklings of 2014.  She was obviously a young duck with little experience maybe this was her first brood as her ducking where spread far and wide right near a busy road and I did notice the local crows taking particular interest in these chicks and I did wonder if they took these ducklings as an easy snack.  Either way this video goes to show how close you can get to English wildlife if you take you time and build their confidence in you, I could have literally picked one up had I wished.

This wasn’t the first duck close encounter of the weekend either as during the past week I decided to change tactics on the carp quest pit and try for some of the bream and tench on there.  Whilst waiting for a run my new drake companion came over, as he always seems to do now, to say hello and of course our friend ship is a one way street with food overcoming his fear of myself.  I have been slowly building his confidence and I don’t think it will be long before he is taking food from my hand, up to yet we are on eating from my Wellington boot stage.

I have been a member of Warrington Anglers for the passed 5 years now and in that time I have really enjoyed reading Franks Weekly blog update where he writes about captures and developments within the club on a weekly basis.  Despite the hostility towards myself from certain high quarters amongst this club I still take time each week to read this interesting column.  I have to say though for some weeks now the updates have taken a darker tone with fish capture reports being overshadowed with a dark undertone of threats and what seems a wanting to portray a zero tolerance attitude to the club. I started to notice it a while ago when threats to ban people from the club for leaving gates open where mentioned in the odd update, this has now developed recent weeks to threats that if you are banned the club has signed up with other clubs so you are in effect banned from any clubs signing up to this agreement, a bit like pub watch.

This last week I read with astonishment as it was announced that two people found on Grey mists fishing at night without a night permit where to be banned from the club at a recent hearing at the clubs HQ.  Now I am not saying this is not a serious breech of the rules but surely asking them to pack in and a slap across the wrist to the effect if caught again without one then a ban for the season may be given is better treatment of this problem as if I have also read it right these people will now also be banned from joining any other clubs!.  I am not being funny but I have fished WAA waters for a long time and seen some treatment of fish and blatant littering in broad daylight and using the pathways as toilets that in my opinion is a far worse breech than not having a night permit that could just be a case of them not being aware they cant night fish with the normal card.   This of course is all based on an outsider looking in but to a regular reader of this update it is how it reads to me.

I also took the time this week to read that the club has admitted to the fact there was discussions on them turning Sandiway lakes into a Syndicate part of the club.  I sincerely hope this remains the case as it is my money as well as many other anglers money that has been put into this club to fund the incessant stocking of carp after carp into these waters, to then not be able to fish these waters without signing up and paying more money on top to then fish for fish that I have already paid into the club to stock is not only wrong but a disgrace should it go ahead.  In the piece I read the club had said it would not happen and fingers crossed it is never even thought about again, it’s a terrible idea that not only segregates the club but also is totally wrong for the reasons mentioned above.

The stocking policy of this club this year still is based around stocking carp into the clubs waters I see from the introduction in the licence.  It is obvious to myself that although this club is not a money making organisation aimed at profit that profit margins are looking to be widened in the long run, carp is a popular arm of fishing, bigger carp in large numbers attracts more anglers in turn equals more licences and then in turn as its carp anglers the purchasing of night cards is increased, it makes sense but leaves the average silver angler wondering just what he gets out of this stocking policy, apart from being snapped to pieces by carp when fishing light for pristine roach on his local reservoir. 

I finish this introduction with a story that I feel proves my point I made a few months ago before I was kicked off the WAA facebook page for having an opinion.   I said at the time that the stocking of High Legh fisheries after its fish kills was a disgrace.  After a complete fish kill the club bought 80 3-6lb carp from winsford anglers and this was seen as a great stocking by the club, hailed as the club devoting money to their waters.  I said at the time that the stocking of carp was all well and good but the club also needed to stock silvers as well unless you will be left with a water that only fishes in warmer months when the carp are active and the water will become a waste of time in the colder months.  In this time of our waters being abused by poles and cormorants I believe our only defence is anglers being on the bank all year round, if this was a great silvers water as well as containing carp it would attract anglers all year round and see the banks regularly visited and deter these problems.  I logged into a second facebook account I have on WAA Facebook recently to see a number of anglers complaining at fishing this water and blanking and not even getting a sign of a bite after a few trips, complaining at the lack of bites and captures, well had the club stocked silvers there is the option to fish fro roach, bream, perch hell even gudgeon that will feed in this winter to spring period, it is really simple to anyone that actually fishes the waters all year round and when you think a few hundred roach costs about the same as one of these 20lb plus carp they are stocking it really is a sad state of affairs, my point proven? I have also been told by a mate that fishes there that a few fish are looking a bit battered now from repeat captures, well with only 80 fish in such a small water they are not going to look well around their mouths for long.

All in all there are a lot of people in this club who fish for silver fish in both our rivers and lakes and I think its about high time some of them found their mouths before this years and many more years to come licence money is ploughed into creating carp runs waters and possibly an elite carp lake for only the elite to fish. 

And with that it’s onto this weeks fishing,

Saturday – Stealing a quick hour on a local pond.

As the years pass writing this blog you begin to get to know your waters in more detail and begin to build a picture of waters you know will fish in certain conditions and times of year.  I had planned all week to get out fishing but knew I would only have a short hour to hour and half long window to get my fix in on Saturday; location was paramount in getting a net together.

As I have mentioned in other blogs I dedicate most of my dinner hours to searching for new little ponds or areas of local canals that may through up a fish.  This searching of canals can prove very productive when it comes to the pike fishing especially as so many fish right next to the access points near the car park when if they only took a second on the internet they would see a lovely reed bed or permanent barge mooring just around the next bend.

The pond I chose to fish is a real place of unknown potential, every time I fish it I am taken back by the quality of the roach and rudd and you never really know once that bait settles in the bottom what you will catch.  In the passed we have caught tench, golden tench, crucian carp and some nice perch, so it can be a real place of adventure into the unknown and in truth I think the reason I love it is the fact it takes me right back to a kid fishing ponds and canals with my dad where the magic of what you will catch next burns bright inside.

I knew I only had an hour but was I confident? Course I was the sun was burning down and I knew those rudd and roach would be there for the taking on the drop.  To maximise my chances of putting together a decent net I set up my old whip I have had since a kid, I think it cost me 25 quid at the time and is a whip or a “snatcher” as we used to call it in the real sense of the word as it is not elasticated in any way and the line simply ties to the eye at the end of the pole, fished the full length of the pole to hand it’s a deadly way to put fish caught on the drop in the keep net fast.

Arriving at the pond I passed a few other pools and to my amazement they were all empty, as a kid we would have been up in the dark to get the best spaces on these ponds that are jammed with silvers but jump forward 20 odd years and the age of computers and commercials really has put the local ponds right down the pecking order of things to do as a kid, a real shame as what for the price of a whip (15 quid) some line, hooks and float (5 quid) and half a pint of maggots (a quid) there is hours of fun to be had for free on many local ponds in the country.

Anyhow back to the fishing and with the whip set up with a really light float that takes 4 number 10 weights and a size 20 guru hook I began to fish a swim I had been drip feeding with maggots since my arrival.  Already while setting up I had seen a few swirls giving away the presence of some nice roach or rudd up in the water so in knew a bite would not be long in coming and so it proved, you cannot complain at that for a regular stamp of fish from a pond can you?

The action on the drop was fast and furious with roach and rudd coming at regular intervals.  Anyone who has done any amount of this type of fishing “on the drop” knows it is almost impossible to keep going long term as the fish either spook of move to cover.  There are a number of ways to get around this and the one I adopt is the principle the fish move further out beyond where you are feeding so with that I began flicking the line out in front instead of to the side and the bites continued to come again.

This type of fishing is up there with any fishing I do and in honestly the stamp of fish are of a standard that some people would pay good money to fish a commercial for in my opinion.  This water is in the middle of nowhere, open to all the predators that can easily land on its waters and get an easy meal, or can they?  This is where some clubs fail in the fact they pay to stock fish but fail to devote as much money to providing a safe habitat for the fish.  There is a good reason why these fish are thriving here in these ponds I fish and its cover, most of the pond is covered in thick blanket weed and lines with reeds offering these fish a mountain of invertebrates to feast on, a place to spawn and of course a place to hide from predators.  Build the habitat and then stock the fish and you will find yourself with sustainable water where you can stock any species of fish you like and don’t need to use avian predators as a reason not to stock.

I was only on this water for a short amount of time, around hour to hour and half and put together a reasonable net of fish in that time.  I am hoping to get back on here for a full day soon to see if I can build a swim and get some bait on the bottom to see what else lives in this quiet pond.

Till next time I wash you all

Tight lines


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