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Caught in the deep silt.
you could use the chod rig too, which
is perfectly designed for this type of
bottom. Obviously it’s more difficult if
you’re fishing out at distance, when
you’d need a much larger lead, but if
you’re not fishing out too far you can
keep the lead size down and just let
the little lead slide down to the bottom and have it as a running chod rig
with a very buoyant bait on it, and
that will stay on top of the silt as well.
At the end of the day, I’m not sure
whether it’s too important to stay on
top of the silt. I’ve fished some pretty
silty lakes myself in the past, and
once you get fish feeding on maggots
and small particles, they’re right
down in the silt with their heads
down and their gill covers beneath
the level of the silt digging away
there, bubbling up, and a bait fished
on top of the silt is probably not what
you want anyway in that situation.
Question three is from another
Harefield guy, so there are obviously
quite a few guys from that area reading the magazine. This time crayfish
are the problem, and yeah, what a
nightmare these little critters are. The
only place I’ve really fished that had a
major problem was Withy Pool some
time ago, and it was an absolute
nightmare. It was at the time when
we were using quite thin fibre hook-
links and they would tangle them up
within minutes of them being down
there. We fished pop-ups a foot off the
bottom and they would just drag
these down to the bottom and eat
them straight away. There are some
really hard baits you can make by
adding egg albumin to your base mix,
and the more egg albumin, the more
large granule casein that you add to
the mix. Casein varies from 30 mesh,
which is the coarsest, up to 200,
which is very, very fine, more like
flour. Most of the stuff that we buy as
carp anglers is 80 or 100 mesh casein,
or edible casein, as opposed to the
inedible casein that’s used in the
manufacture of glue. But get some 30
mesh casein, some egg albumin and a
little bit of lactalbumin, a little bit of
soya-isolate, and you can make some
very, very hard baits.
There was a time when tiger nuts
didn’t seem to be liked by crayfish,
and on a number of waters that I
knew, guys were getting away with
using tigers. However, I hear that
these days that they even like tigers
now, and even if they’re not eating
them, they’re making such a mess of
the hooklinks so you need to use a
thick nylon hook-link. Amnesia or
something like that is good, which
can’t be tangled up – a hinged stiff rig
or chod rig and either make the bait
as hard as possible or put something
round it, which stops the crayfish getting at it. There are some little nylon
cages that are made by Solar I think,
or possibly Enterprise Tackle. You still
catch fish with them on; it just looks
so out of place to me, so barbaric, but
I guess on the bottom of the lake, the
fish are not going to know. The other
thing of course is putting some sort of
plastic tubing or shrink tube over
them but from what I understand
apparently they still manage to get at
them because you can’t cover the
whole bait in shrink tube. You leave a
couple of bits at either end to let the
smell and the taste get out, and of
course it lets the crayfish in, so yeah,
they really are a nightmare. My advice
to you is to get Mr. Dougal over there
and he’ll get those crayfish out the
lake for you – that’s what he does for
a living.
So, question four is on moon phases
from Mr J Smith at Yateley, asking is
there anything in it or not? I’ve
always thought there was, and it’s
only more in recent times that I’ve
actually taken the trouble to document moon phases and record results
and captures when there are certain
shapes of the moon out there. Sounds
like a plug I know, but I’ve just done a
FREE LINE 121

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