Wednesday, 29 February 2012

29/02/2012 - Eliburn

Time - 1430 - 1545
Water - Inflow clear, clouding up into the main water
Where - Next to inflow bridge
Weather - Dull but OK & improving
Method - Float, maggots, 18 inches down
Total - 6

14.5 inch Ide
Without much time on my hands I opted for a single rod assault and headed for the top end where I can guarantee interest.

Not too long before my arrival, someone had obviously been feeding ducks as there was a lot of bread on the surface, but no ducks around. However there were two or three carp in the 3-5lb range sooking and swirling at it on the surface which was encouraging for starters. Unfortunately I didn't have any bread with me.

14 inch Ide
First cast my float disappeared and I was into a decent Ide of about 16-17 inch. I was toying with how to land it as my net was still folded and after a minute or so, as I tried to set up my net it escaped.

Continuing with the method of casting and then dropping some mags over the float area was proving successful. A couple of foot or so down you could see the fish hoovering up the maggots on the drop and the float was disappearing often enough. The first fish to be banked was a 14.5 inch Ide, soon followed by a 14 incher.

As the fish began to wise up - more phantom bites were increasing as the fish gobbled then spat the mags before I could strike - I increased the amount of maggots from 2 or 3 up to full beard. Although still attracting interest from the Ide, I connected with a couple of Perch. The first was just under 5 inch and the next a veritable Eliburn monster of 6 whole inches.

I'm pretty well versed in what Eliburn holds and have caught or seen most species. On maggot and float alone I've connected with Carp, Barbel, Tench, Rudd, Hybrid, Ide, Gudgeon, Roach & Bream. However, as far as I know, I'm yet to encounter a Chub. Having never encountered them anywhere else either, I have no experience of them to use as a marker. It is my suspicion that I have caught Chub amongst hauls of Ide, but just not been aware of it at the time. I've been told they have unmistakably big mouths, but, considering the variety I've hooked, I'm very surprised I haven't even caught a Chub by accident. Most unlikely. Needless to say, now I'm aware of this I've been paying special attention to all 'Ide' I catch.

There was still a fair bit of interest in general although I was casting a bit further and wider. My next two fish were smaller than the first two Ide, but quite interesting in the old Ide/Chub debate.

Fish Five, 13.5 inches
Fishes One & Two I characterise thus: A deeper, rounder 'breamier' shape as is apparent in the photos. Quite rough to the touch when dealing with them on the bank and quite a thuddy fight without many or any runs.

The last two fish were different enough to arouse my suspicions, whilst being similar enough to allow my doubt and confusion to rumble on.

As soon as I hooked them, at a further distance than I'd caught my earlier two Ide, I noticed a difference in the fight. I suspected they were Roach as they were much flittier, a bit stronger though not heavier and making runs. Once banked I noticed their scales to be relatively larger and noticeably continuing up round and over the back of the fish. They were more slender and very slimy to touch. However the colouration was as good as identical both on the body and the reddishness of the fins. Fish Five was 13.5 inches and Fish Six was 12 inches.

So for the time being I'll continue to call the last two Ide until I determine the differences for sure, or catch a Chub which shows itself to be completely different from the Ide I've been taking.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

19/02/2012 - Cockenzie

Elaborate & brooding wind break
Time - 15.30-16.45
Water - Halfway between high & low tide
Where - Warm water outflow & North Harbour wall
Weather - Breezy and not too warm
Method - Spoon
Total - 0 (zilch)

A quickish hour or so on a mainly investigatory expedition. A couple of boys on the sea side of the bridge over the outflow appeared to be bait fishing with set lines. Another dude on my side using a rubber sandeel under a float on lightish tackle and my good self with a blue/silver spoon. All without success.

Cockenzie Harbour
There was a cormorant coming and going suggesting the presence of something worthwhile. The guy I spoke to had only restarted fishing last year but had been told that the odd bass is taken when they come near to the warm water in the power station outflow.

Otherwise, in June-July a bit of orthodox Mackerel bashing can provide a bit of fun.

With no success at the outflow, I tried the harbour entrance for 10 minutes but the tide was well on it's way out and nothing registered.