Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Just back from a half term trip to France. Fishing on the Yonne near Auxerre, a new river for us it once held the French Carp record with an 80lb fish caught by Msr Rieves near the river’s confluence with the Seine. The much photographed fish ended up in the Rieves family freezer, its value today to a Commercial Carp fishery that have spread right across France would have run well into five figures. The Carp on the river are few and far between and the chances of dropping in on some of them in a week are pretty slim. We fished a feeder or float for much of the week, catching numerous Barbel, Chub, Bream, Roach, Perch, Gudgeon and a Bullhead on maize, meat and maggots Great sport on light tackle, the fish were caught in fast flowing water gin clear and about five foot deep the Barbel in particular were in superb condition, rod wrenching bites and a thumping scrap on four pound line. The river was low, clear and many of the fish were clumped together in the deeper holes and glides, a familiar picture to home. Midweek we took ourselves off to a lake nearby and fished for twenty-four hours for Carp. Around eight acres in size we had the place to ourselves, the overnight temperature dipped to minus three and we did not touch a fish, not even a liner. The Fishery Manager proudly informed us that he had tipped three quarters of a tonne of pellets into the lake in the preceding weeks in his efforts to get the fish to grow for next summer, with little sign of feeding fish and clear unmuddied water most of those pellets must still lie on the bed of the lake what chance did we have of a fish taking our meagre offerings?
At home my parents kindly stepped in to do dog, fish, pheasant and Chicken duties. My employer shot the ducks for the first time, with few birds around and a clear night they were not too successful. The Pheasants are still holed up in the Maize and will make good tasty eating if Maize has formed the main base of their diet; a side dish of acorns can make them taste a little funny although they don’t seem to have found these yet. Strong winds and heavy rain greeted our return and the river has lifted a little, many of the leaves were blown off over a weekend and the screens on the stew ponds need regular cleaning if they are not to become blocked. The fish are now moving into full spawning mode with some huge redds dug on the shallows, Herons have become increasingly bold with the temptation of easy stabbings in the shallows, while the low water has at least kept the incoming Cormorants off the river.