FL09June - Page 168



Best of British
back to the eighteenth century, and is
steeped in carp fishing history, so it
was important to him that he found
the right fish.
Simon must have been pleased
with his first consignment, as he has
now committed to an ongoing fiveyear stocking plan! He realises
though that to get the most from his
new and existing stock he needs to
take measures to ensure they're given
the very best environment in which to
grow. In Braxted Park's case this has
meant regular chalking applications
to unlock the hidden nutrients in the
substantial silt deposits the lake contains. He's also carrying out regular
netting operations to remove excessive silver fish populations, which,
unlike the carp, seem to find the lake
perfect for reproduction! This is effective, active fishery management that
will give all of the lake’s carp stock
the very best chance of achieving
their full potential.
One of the more immediate benefits of stockings I see on countless
fisheries year in, year out, from a fishing point of view, is that the lakes
tend to fish extremely well the next
winter, due to the new stock fish
being accustomed to regular winter
feeding. They soon mingle with the
existing stock, which seems to
encourage them all to have a little
feed. This last winter on the estate
was no exception, and it has been one
of the best on record with good numbers of captures from both the original and newly introduced stock, and
(Top) One of my growing-on lakes
under construction.
(Right) These two stunners went into
my own Limebrook syndicate fish.
168 FREE LINE
the estate is normally a very tricky
winter water.
Another example of good fishery
management is Tony and James
down at Medway Valley Fisheries in
Kent. They have got the balance just
right, and are reaping the rewards in
growth terms. They have had some
awesome weight gains from some of
the fish I have supplied to them at
their Brooklands lake, which has to be
one of my favourite venues that I've
stocked carp into in recent years. The
Medway guys have all the ingredients
for taking their stock to its full potential. To start with they close the lake
to anglers for a week after stocking to
allow them time to settle into their
new environment. The lake itself is
relatively lightly stocked, and has
superb water quality with an abundance of natural food available. Couple these factors with an understanding, conscientious syndicate membership prepared to give these growing
fish what they want in the form of
plenty of good quality bait, and it’s no
surprise to hear that they've had
some incredible growth with fish
achieving in excess of 10lb in their
first year!
Many of the pictures you see here
are from the Brooklands stockings.
They've had some truly awesome fish
ranging from lightly, deep chestnut
coloured, leathery fish through to linears and heavily plated near fullyscaled fish, not forgetting some
absolute bulldozer commons with big
bulky shoulders and attitudes to
match. These commons are phenomenal growers, due largely I believe to
their aggressive feeding nature. I find
a lot of my customers only want mirrors, until they see one of my commons that is! This cross section of different scale patterns produces an
interesting and varied stock in a fishery – they can’t all be fully-scaled;
there needs to be a balance or the
scaly ones won’t be special.
Brooklands is well on the way to
being an incredible water, definitely
one to watch for the future, and it will
be so much sweeter in the long run,
for the management and members
alike, knowing they've done it the
proper way instead of taking the easy,
instant big fish route. It's great to see
my fish going into high quality waters
such as these, and long may it continue, as I know that they will be the
top-end fisheries of the future; the
ones with some history and substance to their stock that will captivate the minds and desires of the discerning carp anglers of the future.
Proper English carp, going into proper
English waters, just how it should be!
For more info, visit www.englishcarpfisheries.co.uk
All the best, Paul Middleton. n

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