Saturday, July 11, 2015

Fifty shades of grey.

With adding a few more species to my 2015 Scottish saltwater challenge tally in mind I grabbed my sun cream and hat and headed west on Tuesday. Sadly neither were required as this year's rather dreadful weather continued. 

The summer sun nowhere to be seen on Loch (not so) Fyne.

All of the recent stormy weather had dumped a lot of water into the loch and as a result the water was quite peaty and had a fair amount of loose weed suspended in it. Removing this from my scaled down two hook flapper was a bit of a pain but fishing small raw prawn chunks on some very light tackle had me catching fish from the first cast. The only species that were on the feed were dabs which I caught a steady procession of. 

Goggle eyed dabs. Another species added to my 2015 tally.
On most flatfish the second eye seems to make it all the way over but not on a dab. Their eyes are quite large and there's not really enough room for two of them on one side!

In the past I've also caught haddock, common dragonets, black gobies and sand gobies from the area I was fishing but after wandering along the weedy shoreline as the tide creeped up it all I had caught were more dabs. Keen to catch something else I headed up to Loch Etive to fish around Kelly's Pier at Taynuilt. In the past amongst other species I've caught black gobies, sand gobies and pouting from it but there was no sign of any gobies so I started fishing off the end of it into deeper water. This resulted in a steady stream of fish. 

Some quite dark grey gurnards.
A few small codling put up a good fight on my light rod.
It was soon apparent that grey gurnards were present in large numbers including this very darkly coloured, almost black old warrior.
After a whle I caught a string of poor cod. They can be quite pretty little fish with their pearlescent pink flanks. 

With seemingly no pouting around I returned my attention to hunting for gobies and plopped my rig into the rotten remains of what used to be the main part of the pier. 

Full of hiding holes and covered in weed. The perfect place for mini species like gobies to hang out.

Trying different spots close in to the decaying timber pilings I eventually had a few taps and hooked a fish. My first black goby from Scottish waters this year was soon in hand.

Species number thirty one successfully added. Much darker in colour than the ones I caught from the Black Sea last month.

Before leaving I tried in the deep water again which resulted in a few more grey gurnard, cod, poor cod, a coalfish and a whiting. No pouting though.

Not the member of the cod family I was hoping for but I was happy to provide a free of charge parasite removal service before releasing it again. 

The miserable grey sky overhead and a few showers hadn't stopped me having fun catching plenty of fish and I lost track of the time before remembering I had a fairly long drive home to do and checked what time it was. Two species added to my tally meant it had been quite a productive day really. I'll no doubt return to these two venues later in the year and perhaps by then the summer will have gotten its act together and my sun cream and hat can come out of retirement as that would be nice but I'm not counting on it.

Tight lines, Scott.


  1. Very envious, Scott - you have some fantastic venues! Unfortunately I've got to sit on my hands until I can get to Pembrokeshire in August. Cheers, Ian.

    1. To be fair Ian, the fishing I have locally isn't that great and I do put the miles in to get to all these places. When I think about all the driving I end up doing I might as well live inland! :-D