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short while.
Winter Fishing/Baiting
There seem to be some big differences to how we all approach winter!
It’s funny how contrasting styles can
still reap the rewards. I’m very interested in a few comments Lee made in
his reply to Mr H Bannister’s question. First of all I couldn’t agree more
with his statements against the use of
high fishmeal and high oil baits in
winter as I mentioned in my answer,
but the statement that intrigues me
most is “Take a look back to before
fishmeals were in common use. Back
then waters fished well all year round;
in fact they often fished better in winter, as feeding times were usually
more predictable. Nowadays these
same waters just don’t fish in the
colder months any more despite the
fact that we’ve actually got a bit better at fishing for them”. I’m a relative
newcomer to winter fishing – back in
the day I used to dabble for the pike
instead. After that my cold weather
carp fishing was a half-hearted affair
that consisted of socials and opportunist angling in milder spells. I only
started taking it seriously about eight
or nine years ago and looking into
how carp behave in winter. So I’m
very interested if fishmeals have
altered the way winter carp act or if it
is an increase in weed – something
else I didn’t really know about.
Chub Floation Sling.
Winter fishing.
Lee also mentions the word stodge,
which is how I like to describe how
the fish must feel if they eat a bait that
is hard to digest, and this leads me on
to a topic that goes against the grain
of winter baits. Surely high protein
baits will stodge the fish up and take
a lot for them to digest? So why do
anglers talk so much about switching
to milk protein baits in winter? Now
I’m sure milk proteins are not as bad
for the fish in winter as fishmeals, but
they will still take a while for the fish
to digest and stodge them out for a
time, which surely works against
what we as anglers are trying
to achieve? Surely we want the
fish to eat regularly so that they
are catchable? I’m not suggesting we feed them total rubbish, just something they can
digest with ease and get nutrition from. I know little bit about
milk proteins from my 14 years
experience as a lab technician
in the dairy industry, and I have
my own ideas of what a good
winter bait is, but I’m really
interested to hear what the
other contributors think on
Another thing that I have
picked up on from Lee and Rob
is that they both mention they
like fishing lakes with no weed
in winter. I think I know the
answer, but can I ask them why
this is? There may be something I haven’t thought of.
Rob mentioned that some
people don’t have confidence
in using the mag-aligner. I’m
sorry Rob, but I have to admit I am
one of those people! I have tried it on
a couple of occasions without any
success, but I suppose the main reason for not using it for my fishing is
down to a couple of reasons: on the
waters I have fished in the past I like
to leave my rods out for 24 hours, and
I am always worried about if the bait
has been sucked off by roach, and
also I find that the maggots on the
hook tend to slide round to the barb
and can impale themselves on the
hook point. I have tried hooking them
in different ways to stop this, but
since it has happened a couple of
times I am a little unconfident about
trying it again. So any tips are welcome Mr Maylin, and I promise to
give it another try this winter.
It’s a shame about the big named
fish that have died over the past few
years. I would like to ask the rotarians
(I quite like the sound of that!) if there
is any fish they regret not having a
proper dabble for? Or if in hindsight
they could have changed their campaigns around to go for it earlier? The
one I regret not catching or having a
proper go for is The Fat Lady from St
Ives. I did four nights on there this
year (or last year as you read this)
before reports of its death reached
me. I wish I had tried a bit harder to
get a ticket in 2006 instead of blanking my backside off a mile up the
track. I did love it up the road (and I
plan to return) but two fish in a year
isn’t that productive!
One month on and the Elphicks fish
has creped another 2lb closer to the
British Record weight. I don’t know


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