28 May 2013

Blackfords Blog May 2013

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Hi to all and welcome all members new and old to another new season at Blackfords. The new tickets have been available now for the last 3-4 weeks and judging by the number of anglers on the bank the club will once again fulfil its membership with ease. There really cannot be a better value for money ticket available country wide. Unfortunately tickets are no longer available on the bank so please make sure you purchase your ticket before fishing at the various shops around the area, details can be found on the membership page.

Winter seems to have gone on and on this year and with the exception of a wonderful sunny day on May bank holiday there seems to be no end in sight of the changeable weather conditions. The fishing has been tough this winter with only the hardiest of anglers venturing out.

Since I last wrote on the blog it can be safe to say the society has been very busy, both in its work around the pools and also its stocking program. You will have noticed that the Turf pool car parking area has had valuable work done to it. It had been a bog for many months due to the very wet weather and was in need of some serious work. With a little wheeling and dealing from Dean, a large amount of hardcore was acquired and duly spread around the area to sure up the parking area. The newly erected fence has also in my opinion enhanced the look of the pool. Keeping the cars away from the bank has provided a safe fishing area for all. A big thank you to Dean, Spence and Don for all their efforts.

Adam Brown 22lb 5oz Turf Mirror April 2013.Whilst we are talking about the Turf pool you may have seen on the web site the introduction of 4 20lb+ mirror carp from VS Fisheries. These really are a top quality strain fish which have been stocked in many of the top fisheries around the country. These fish have attracted quite a lot of interest as you would imagine and thus the Turf is full of anglers on most days of the week. I think im right in saying that two of the fish have now been caught, one on three occasions (Seems to have my appetite) but as yet two have stayed elusive. They have lost a little weight which was expected but they have remained in pristine condition so hopefully they will now gain weight as the bait goes in through the summer months. If you are lucky enough to catch these fish please take good care of them, take a few pics and get them in to Gary so we can keeps tabs on what is happening. This applies to all your photos and catch reports, keep them coming in to Gary and we will post them on the web site.

There has also been another large investment in silver fish at Kingswood lake. Work continues here on a long term program to raise the fish stocks to improve the catch rates. Fish stocking can be a very expensive business, thus may take time but the committee continues to be proactive and forward thinking to try and increase stocks while being sensible with available fund. For those who attended the AGM would have seen, almost all of last years funds were spent on either new fish or pool maintenance. I believe that the current program of investment around the pools means we can all enjoy some of the finest fishing around.

IMAG0909Calf Heath pool has as you will all know been Blackfords premiere water with huge catches of both silver fish and carp. The committee do not take this for granted and has been the topic of many an hour’s conversation regarding the fish stocks and how this may be managed cost effectively. It has also become increasingly alarmed at the number of cormorants which seem to be predating on our silver stocks. To this end we have sort advice from various people as to the best way to deal with the birds, but as you can imagine there is a lot of red tape and the like to get through and so is ongoing.  Various bird scaring devises are being tried in an attempt to deter the birds landing but not all are successful. The society will do all it can to limit their impact on the lake. On a brighter note, the fish spawning/ safe haven devises implemented along the damn wall are proving a very big success and the number of fry found around the margins has been quite incredible. This natural breeding is both very healthy for the pool and also very cost effective, so long may it continue. The future fish stocks will continue to be very good if they can be protected enough.

In addition to the existing carp stocks I have been given permission from the committee to purchase six new 20lb + carp from VS Fisheries. This will be a fantastic addition to the sport had by all, and should be with us in the autumn 2014. Calf heath was once the home of many 20lb carp but in recent years has only thrown up one or two. It was felt that some new fish were needed to keep the interest going and should relieve some of the pressure that the Turf pool is experiencing. Blackfords has never stocked such fish in the past so I personally would like to thank the committee for their forward thinking and commitment to the carp fishing section of the club.

As with previous blogs I must mention my own exploits on the bank.  I have not managed as much time on the bank as I would like (and who has) but I have been getting around as many different lakes as possible. Most recently I have had a couple of day/nights down the Turf and was lucky enough to bag one of the new mirror carp at 22lb 6oz. The fish gave a good account of itself and was in great condition. I decided to have a change of tactic to normal and fished a cell pop up boilie over a large bed of 11mm pellet. I just kept feeding little and often and this seemed to do the job nicely. In the same session I had 4 further carp and a very nice Tench, only about 2lb in weight but in fantastic condition and was a very nice addition to a great days fishing.

Going further afield, at the end of March I had my annual trip to France. With Gary accompanying me as my usual nets-man, I mean fishing partner, we travelled down to Lake Beauregard. We had been planning the trip for months but as we travelled down to catch the shuttle through snow blizzards we looked at each other and wondered if we were both mad! It did not get a whole lot better or warmer as we travelled the 3 ½ hrs across France, they had had as much snow as us and the snow was piled high along the motorway. On reaching the pool conditions looked tough, there was not a bud or leaf on a tree and the pool looked far from awake. We eventually picked swims on the back of a cold north easterly wind and set up camp for the week ahead…

Phil Russell - 54lb 12oz - Beauregard April 2013 After three fish-less nights we were both getting a little anxious, things were not going well. So after a trip to the Super U for fresh supplies, the French version of Tesco, you can get through some Desperado’s and bottles of red wine you know when your not catching, I decided to do a little stalking after spying some feeding fish. Within 30 mins I had bagged a 33lb and a 39lb 12oz mirror. What a relief!! On the Wednesday I tried the same tactic but the fish were nowhere to be seen. On my way back to my peg I noticed a few bubbles from a little margin area, got to be worth a cast I thought….. Oh happy days, what transpired was the best fishing experience of my fishing carrier. After only 20 minutes or so of casting in I was into a fish of a lifetime and as you can see from my smile, was I a happy chappy! A new PB mirror of 54lb 12oz. I cannot explain the feeling of holding such a creature, for those who have you will know what I mean and for those who have not, trust me it is quite unbelievable.

Gary Kuzmicz - 43lb 2oz - Beauregard - April 2013 By the Wednesday night I was the only one to have had any fish and it really was dig deep time to find a method that would work. Gary then moved a rod to new water and finally found some fish, a run of 4 x 20lbers followed. To top his week though was a nice brace of forties, which we had on the bank at the same time. All of Gary’s fish came in a 24hr period!!! It just goes to show, sometimes you have to sit through the bad times to experience and appreciate the good.  A trip to France is something I would recommend to everyone if you get the chance.  I call them holiday fish as I don’t believe you can compare them to your every day fish, how can you when we fish for 20lbers if we are lucky? But I must say, a year without the chance to fish for such creatures is hard to even contemplate… the next 2 years are already booked.  I guess I have been spoilt!

Anyway, back to this planet, the fishing around the lakes should now be getting a lot better for all species and once the spawning is over I am sure some top bags of fish will be had.

Until the next time…Tight lines…Phil

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