Friday, November 16, 2012

Method in my madness.

After a pleasant trip to Eliburn Reservior a few weeks ago I decided to return and have a go for some of the other species that the water holds. After a recent trip with Keith we arranged to fish it yesterday. With the water temperature dropping and tench and carp in mind I decided that since the fish may well be feeding on the bottom I would use the method feeder as my approach. I've never used this before so after watching a load of videos online, visiting the Glasgow Angling Centre to get myself some of the tackle neccessary and borrowing the rest from my mate Jake as well as a load of advice off I went yesterday morning and arrived at just after ten. Keith was due to join me about noon.

Not the sunny day the forecast had predicted but still a fairly pleasant morning despite a few light showers.

I started the session by setting up my feeder rod and cast in my first small ball of method mix with a single pop up corn and a single piece of corn tucked inside just to the left of my peg in front of an overhanging tree. I set this on an alarm and then proceeded to set up a float rod to fish maggots under a waggler. After plumbing the depth a couple of rods out and setting my float so that my single maggot was on the bottom it wasn't long before I had landed a couple of gudgeon.

I like gudgeon. They are a pretty cool little fish.

Just after I returned the second one the bite alarm on my feeder rod gave a couple of peeps before sounding solidly. I quickly lifted it and felt the weight of a fish. It wasn't a big fish and after a very short fight it was on the surface and I soon had my first ever tench in my net! Given that was my first ever cast of a method feeder I now had high hopes that it would hopefully produce more fish over the rest of the session!

A nice tench, my first fish on a method feeder.

Carefully putting the fish back with one thrash of its massive tail it had returned to the cloudy depths. At this point I noticed a robin had landed in the tree next to me and seemed to be watching me. I took a few pictures and it took a moment or two for me to realise that it was actually watching something else!

A sure sign that winter is on the way and that you've left the lid off your maggots.

I put the lid back on my maggots to avoid the cheeky bird from attempting an assault and no doubt tipping them everywhere in the process. I then cast out the method feeder again to roughly the same spot before returning to my maggot drowning, catching a third gudgeon almost immediately. I then decided to try presenting my maggot a bit further up in the water column and after trying different depths for a while and playing with my shotting pattern to decrease the rate at which my bait was falling I had a few bites before finally hooking a fish that I initially thought was a roach but as it came closer I realised it wasn't.

Another new species but which one?

I wasn't sure what it was and while I was inspecting it I laid my float rod down. Still unsure about what it was I decided to pop it into my net and keep it in the hope that another angler may pass who could help me identify it. When I picked up my float rod again I realised that my maggot had fallen into the margin and when I lifted it up I had a cheeky little perch on the end!

A small shoal of these was hiding amongst the weeds growing in front of my peg.

After amusing myself a little catching three more of them the bailiff arrived and after paying him for my days fishing I showed him my mystery fish. He thought it was either a small bream or a hybrid of some description. Keith arrived at this point and he also thought it was a small bream or a hybrid. I popped it back and continued fishing. Fishing in the afternoon was fairly slow however and despite several method feeders full of mix being cast into the swim and my alarm beeping a couple of times we only managed a further five fish between us all on the float with Keith managing three roach and myself a single roach and a second mystery fish.

This small roach took a maggot fished just under my float.
My final fish of the day. But what is it, Bream or Hybrid? A bit of further research required.

Another enjoyable days fishing at this venue was soon over and we packed up as darkness fell. Two anglers on the opposite side of the reservior did catch a few carp however so at least I know they are still active and will be back again soon to try again for my first carp. I think next time though I'll just fish the method feeder and focus on that. Massive thanks to Jake for all his advice and lending me a load of his carp gear. Maybe next time he can join me.

Tight lines, Scott.

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