freeline-24 - Page 50



Rubbing Salt in the Wound
by Keith Jenkins
W
hat a strange
start to the
year. As I
write this, at
the beginning
of 2012, the
temperature is some 20 degrees
higher than 12 months ago, and the
lakes are a lot more wobbly as well!
I’m not sure how this affects the carp
(are you?). As much as we think, ‘Oh
this is great – big southwesterlies and
double figure temperatures,’ at this
time of year we are normally experiencing cold northerlies, temperatures
in low single figures and, invariably,
frozen lakes.
There is a reason for the seasons…
Death and rebirth, survival of the
fittest, getting rid of the dead wood,
and every other similar sound byte, so
when they don’t work how they
should, there is normally a knock-on
effect. I was out just after Christmas,
on the banks of a warm and windy
lake, and there were still wasps
about! They aren’t the only ones,
either – there are loads of crawling
and flying things that don’t quite
know what’s going on at the moment,
and you have to assume that the
same is true beneath the waves.
Now don’t get worried; I’m not getting all ‘global warming’ on your ass.
As far as I’m concerned we have far
less effect on the global eco-system
than, let’s say, a few tsunami, or half a
dozen rampant volcanoes, or maybe
the odd, well-placed sunspot. It’s
been going on for millions of years
and nothing that we say or do is
going to change it or prevent it. No,
what I’m looking at is more immediate, more in the here and now. Take a
look at those very late wasps,
because, when the freeze comes,
that’s what they’ll be – late. Same for
all of the creatures out there that have
been fooled into a false sense of security – BANG! – it’ll hit ‘em like a ton of
snow.
But what if the freeze doesn’t come
– is that a good thing? As I said earlier
– survival of the fittest, getting rid of
the dead wood. Well, that won’t happen as it should, which will mean
what? The way I see it, it will weaken
the bloodline, because the ones that
the winter should have harvested will
still be around next year, to add their
weaker traits to
the gene pool.
From a carp
angling point of
view, I think that
the gene pool is
getting weakened
enough at the
moment and it
can ill afford to be
compromised
even more. Bring
on the snow and
i c e, I r e c k o n .
Freeze the lakes,
and seek out the
weak and infirm, then, come the
spring, the strongest will have survived once again. Mother Nature has
a way of balancing the books, that’s
for sure, but it could end up being a
pretty harsh lesson if this clement
weather continues for much longer –
but maybe that’s part of the lesson.
That was the weather forecast,
now for the news. As much as I don’t
think that we can affect our eco-system on a global scale, I know we can
on an individual level, and over the
years we’ve had our fair share of
cause and effect, especially in the
carp angling world. So, when I read
about the ‘next great thing’ in carp
angling I had to check my calendar to
check it wasn’t April 1st. Sadly, this
was no joke but, my god, someone
was certainly being a fool.
I’ll give you a hint – salt. Now, we
are all aware of the importance that
salt plays in not only our diets, but
almost everything that lives and
breathes. We are, I would think, also
aware of the consequences of its
overuse. It has been one of the worst
kept secrets in carp angling for many
years that salt can help to enhance a
bait and, as in any food preparation,
(Top) Is this the right stuff – who
knows?
(Left) Do we need some of this now?
50 FREE LINE

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