What's the Catch? Anglers' long wait will soon be over

Those of us who enjoy river fishing don't have long to wait. The close season, which started on March 15, comes to an end on June 15, during which time the spawning period for coarse fish will have hopefully produced new stock.

Wednesday, 7th June 2017, 9:00 am
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 3:28 am
Tim Nudds with a bream caught at Petworth Park

This year there is a major problem: the rain – and I’m not complaining about getting a good soaking. As an angler I would enjoy getting wet.

Please rain, we need you now, don’t hesitate – and no drizzle please, just give us a few days of steady downpours because rivers are drying up throughout the country.

It’s mid-May as I write, so blame me if the rain is pouring down when this is published. I take full responsibility but you must admit we could do with some good homegrown rain.

The good news is we can now remind anglers they can soon get out and about to fish our numerous ponds, lakes and rivers – and what better time of the year to go fishing.

The countryside is at its best and reports taken up to when the season closed indicated most coarse-fish anglers had a decent catch. Last year was pretty good and this year should be very good.

Fish stocks seem to be improving and weights indicate records will be broken; certainly the chub seem to get fatter every year and it’s nice to report more roach coming back.

Fish seem to go in cycles. Not long ago perch were in decline, but they have come bac. Roach disappeared for a few years and are now making a recovery, dace are the latest to dwindle in numbers but pike are numerous in the rivers and ponds – nature plays its hand as usual.

Recently I was fishing my club’s Petworth Park pond with Tim Nudds, a good friend who established Arun Angling, a well-known angling tackle shop in Angmering.

We fished no more than ten yards from each other along the well-trodden gravel path. We both used bait feeders, the same bait, same hooks.

Tim caught 12 good bream on the trot – every time I looked over, his rod tip swung round and another bream filled his landing net. Me? Nothing, apart from a small perch and a roach.

There was no bending rod tip, not even when I started to poach his swim. I was humbled but mystified. I think he got there early and ground-baited before I even got out of bed, so well done Tim.

Please support our tackle shops. Apart from Arun Angling, we have SAS at Stockbridge near Chichester and Prime Angling at Brighton Road, Worthing.

If you want all the fishing gossip, and news of the best places to fish, the shops are the places to go. They have all the gear, tackle and bait and we must support our shops – not everything is cheaper online, and ou don’t get any local advice or suggestions from a website.

Ten years ago, the Petworth and Bognor angling clubs merged. Both clubs have a long history, and a gathering is coming up that will celebrate the anniversary.

In the meantime get out there and enjoy some fresh air and go fishing...even of it’s raining.

See wwwsussexangling.co.uk for more.

Roger Poole

Chairman, Petworth & Bognor Angling Club

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