Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Sunday Girl

This week in 1979 Sunday Girl by Blondie was number one, I was working at Vine Chemicals in Widnes, a factory which was demolished long ago, I was still a single man and I was driving a Vauxhall Avenger Estate, my pride and joy. What else about 1979? Well that was the last time we had a spring that was colder than this one!

The cold weather has had a huge effect on the tench fishing. The tench have simply not fed, as is evident by their condition, long and lean, but they've also failed to arrive on the shallows in numbers and the fishing has been hard, hard, hard. Possibly more profound has been the effect on the weed. Tench cling to weed, they find food in it, they are camouflaged within it and they use it for cover. This year there is no weed, not a shred. It should be clogging my swivels and snagging my feeders but no, there just isn't any. The lack of weed means that the tench don't hand around for long on the shallows during the day and as soon as the sun gets up, they're gone, back to deep water.

I've caught eleven tench so far this season, a pitiful number but actually far more than anyone else I know who's fishing the lake. I took my second eight pounder of the year just yesterday and it weighed exactly eight pounds. That was the only tench of the day, although I did also catch a 2lb+ eel. Today however, things finally picked up a little and I took five tench in all. It was an interesting morning, one in which I saw a shift away from the successful bait on which I had caught every other fish so far this year. Today's fish came mostly to plastic maggots fished on a hair rig and semi-fixed heavy feeder and apart from the four tench I caught on these, I also hooked another which came unstuck on the way in.

Last season I was catching most of my fish on plastic casters yet this year I can't buy a bite on these. I've tried plastic corn for quite a few sessions but only had one aborted run on this bait and today was the first time this year that I've tried the plastic maggots. Why the tench should show these preferences is a mystery, indeed it may be nothing more than coincidence. I might have just made the change on a day when the tench decided to come onto the feed, after all, it has definitely warmed up a few degrees this week.

Best fish today was a fine 6lb 8oz male tench. This wasn't the biggest of the day, that was a fish approaching 7lbs which I didn't weigh but male tench don't grow nearly as big as female tench and 6lb 8oz is quite a big one. I actually caught a bigger male nearly two weeks ago, a fish of 6lb 11oz but it was a sick fish with heavy, lumpy slime which started to bleed from the gills when it was on the bank.

The tench spawned early in June in both of the last two years but there's no possibility of that this year. It's quite likely that the tench fishing will improve from here on as the temperatures improve and the weed grows so I might fish for tench for another month yet, maybe longer.

1 comment:

Pep Franco Seguranyes said...

Nice catches ! And greetings for the blog !