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Tactics for low rivers


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#1 The Flying Tench

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 02:03 PM

I have just come back from a short fishing break on the middle Severn, and the comment from a lot of anglers was that it wasn't fishing well as it was too low. Now my impression is that on my local Thames, although the same applies to a degree, it isn't as important on the Severn.

 

So why is this, and what tactics should we use when the river is low?

 

Is part of the problem lack of colour? Or shortage of oxygen? Or is the rate of flow important? I can see they might want some flow to bring food particles down, but some rivers are pretty slow all the time.

 

Presumably, when angling is hard, the fish are eating less. Why? Do they feed at night instead?

 

Any theories? Any strategies?


john clarke

#2 Matthew Simmons

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 07:44 PM

I think all of those!  But mainly flow and oxygen I suspect.  All the main suspects feed very early morning in these conditions in my experience - although having said that I understand that they've been taking big bags of bream in the day on the upper Thames when the season opened.  My strategy is to leave the rivers for a month or so,  apart from the odd bream session at Child Beale in the evening and fish for tench and crucians - even carp (yuk) in my club lakes.  If I do fish the rivers it would be with bread for the chub and hemp caster for barbel/roach.



#3 Ken L

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 08:18 PM

Low and clear on the middle Severn for me means lure fishing. Spinning for chub and perch in the fast water is at it's best at these times. Trotting can also be very successful if you want to target dace and silver fish. If it's the barbel you fancy, don't even bother fishing before about 6 in the evening.

When I'm planning a full day, I'll often bait up a swim with hemp, pellets, meat etc in the afternoon, fish the lures and then drop into that prebaited swim as the sun gets lower in the sky.

When selecting a swim to bait, be sure you have dense beds of streamer weed or overhanging willows - somewhere that will hold fish in the daytime.

 

The last couple of days have seen the river unusually clear though, I could see every twig on the bottom in 4 feet of water when I fished Arley yesterday.


Species caught in 2017: Siamese carp. Striped catfish. Rohu. Mekong catfish. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima.  Black Minnow Shark. Perch. Chub. Brown Trout. Pike. Bream. Roach. Rudd. Bleak. Common Carp.

Species caught in 2016: Siamese carp. Jullen's golden carp. Striped catfish. Mekong catfish. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima. Alligator gar. Rohu. Black Minnow Shark. Roach, Bream, Perch, Ballan Wrasse. Rudd. Common Carp. Pike. Zander. Chub. Bleak.
Species caught in 2015: Brown Trout. Roach. Bream. Terrapin. Eel. Barbel. Pike. Chub. 
Species caught in 2014: Striped catfish. Pacu. Giant gourami. Clown knife fish. Rohu. Siamese carp. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima. Roach. Bream. Perch. Rainbow trout. Chub. Common Carp, Ide. Brown Trout. Barbel. Mekong catfish. Jullen's golden carp. Alligator gar. Java barb.
Species caught in 2013: Mangrove Jack. Barramundi. Blubberlip snapper. Baracouda. Malabar grouper. Yellowfin Trevally. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Roach. Pike. European Eel. Bleak.
Species caught in 2012: Northern whiting. Moray eel. Barramundi. Snakehead murrel. Silver razorbelly minnow. Deccan Mahseer. Malabar mystus. Deccan rita. Spotted Malabar Grouper. Mangrove Jack. Indian sea catfish. Brown Trout. Chub. Perch. Roach. Rudd.
Species caught in 2011: Indian sea catfish. Sardine. Barramundi. Mangrove Jack. Deccan Mahseer. Humpbacked Mahseer. Yellow Fin Trevelly. Giant Trevelly. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Pike. Atlantic salmon. Dace. Minnow. Roach. Gudgeon. 
Species caught in 2010: Barramundi. Giant Trevelly. Moray eel. Indian sea catfish. Mangrove Jack. Deccan Mahseer. Humpback Mahseer. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Bass. Pike. 
Species caught in 2009: Chub. Perch. Pike. Pacu. Thai Striped Catfish. 
Species caught in 2008: Barramundi. p-i-k-e-y sea bream. Indian sea catfish. Guitarfish. Mangrove Jack. Mahseer. Squid (Not strictly a fish but it took a lure !). Emperor Sweetlip. Black Spot Snapper. Moray eel. Spangled Emperor. Bluecheek silver grunt. Yellow striped emperor. Vanikoro sweeper. Pike. Perch. Brown trout. Chub. Atlantic salmon.


#4 The Flying Tench

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 08:22 PM

Thanks, Matthew

 

If oxygen is the problem, I guess weir pools could be a part answer?

 

On the subject of hemp and caster (or hemp and tares) I associate these particularly with float fishing, which I greatly enjoy, but I'm a bit limited at present with my eyesight particularly as dusk comes on. Has Mat or anyone else tried these using ledgering?


john clarke

#5 The Flying Tench

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 08:35 PM

Hi Ken

I think we posted concurrently. Fascinating that you were at Arley yesterday. I checked it out on Monday but, rightly or wrongly, thought it looked too fast for roach, which was my (probably wrong) target. How did you get on? I can't imagine lure fishing in such fast water with so much (very healthy) streamer weed. Would one fish over the top of the weed, or would weedless lures cope with it? Do you wade at a venue like that?

Low and clear on the middle Severn for me means lure fishing. Spinning for chub and perch in the fast water is at it's best at these times. Trotting can also be very successful if you want to target dace and silver fish. If it's the barbel you fancy, don't even bother fishing before about 6 in the evening.

When I'm planning a full day, I'll often bait up a swim with hemp, pellets, meat etc in the afternoon, fish the lures and then drop into that prebaited swim as the sun gets lower in the sky.

When selecting a swim to bait, be sure you have dense beds of streamer weed or overhanging willows - somewhere that will hold fish in the daytime.

 

The last couple of days have seen the river unusually clear though, I could see every twig on the bottom in 4 feet of water when I fished Arley yesterday.


john clarke

#6 Phone

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 09:47 PM

Tench,

 

I've answered your question in "Have a Laugh".  Those are the second hundred.

 

Phone



#7 Ken L

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Posted 05 July 2017 - 11:04 PM

Hi Ken

I think we posted concurrently. Fascinating that you were at Arley yesterday. I checked it out on Monday but, rightly or wrongly, thought it looked too fast for roach, which was my (probably wrong) target. How did you get on? I can't imagine lure fishing in such fast water with so much (very healthy) streamer weed. Would one fish over the top of the weed, or would weedless lures cope with it? Do you wade at a venue like that?

It's not much of a problem, the areas where I'm targeting chub and perch tend to be scoured clear of weed and I can fish over what remains with a standard size 2 or 3 Mepps.

Tuesday wasn't a red letter day. I had a dozen or so chub but nothing big although I did spot a pair of monsters that drifted off in response to my insufficiently stealthy approach.

I did better with the perch and had almost two dozen. Again, nothing huge but perhaps half of then were in the 10oz - 1lb range.

I only saw one pike all day (most have been poached and eaten) but I missed it.

I also failed to hook up on two very nice brownies.

I did try a sneaky approach to the peg with the big chub on my way back but the lure got nailed by a perch on the first cast.

Dad was bait fishing and parked himself in the shade of a big tree and fished a blockend feeder hard against the weed and ended up with five little barbel, half a dozen chub, some nice dace and some bits. He would have done better but we had to pack up by six because dogs needed feeding.

 

If you are going to feeder fish, don't bait and wait. With the fish so active in the warm water, it needs to be reloaded, rebaited and recast every 10 or 15 minutes.

 

Wading? Yep, it's shorts and sandals. I got eaten alive by horseflies though.


Edited by Ken L, 05 July 2017 - 11:07 PM.

Species caught in 2017: Siamese carp. Striped catfish. Rohu. Mekong catfish. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima.  Black Minnow Shark. Perch. Chub. Brown Trout. Pike. Bream. Roach. Rudd. Bleak. Common Carp.

Species caught in 2016: Siamese carp. Jullen's golden carp. Striped catfish. Mekong catfish. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima. Alligator gar. Rohu. Black Minnow Shark. Roach, Bream, Perch, Ballan Wrasse. Rudd. Common Carp. Pike. Zander. Chub. Bleak.
Species caught in 2015: Brown Trout. Roach. Bream. Terrapin. Eel. Barbel. Pike. Chub. 
Species caught in 2014: Striped catfish. Pacu. Giant gourami. Clown knife fish. Rohu. Siamese carp. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima. Roach. Bream. Perch. Rainbow trout. Chub. Common Carp, Ide. Brown Trout. Barbel. Mekong catfish. Jullen's golden carp. Alligator gar. Java barb.
Species caught in 2013: Mangrove Jack. Barramundi. Blubberlip snapper. Baracouda. Malabar grouper. Yellowfin Trevally. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Roach. Pike. European Eel. Bleak.
Species caught in 2012: Northern whiting. Moray eel. Barramundi. Snakehead murrel. Silver razorbelly minnow. Deccan Mahseer. Malabar mystus. Deccan rita. Spotted Malabar Grouper. Mangrove Jack. Indian sea catfish. Brown Trout. Chub. Perch. Roach. Rudd.
Species caught in 2011: Indian sea catfish. Sardine. Barramundi. Mangrove Jack. Deccan Mahseer. Humpbacked Mahseer. Yellow Fin Trevelly. Giant Trevelly. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Pike. Atlantic salmon. Dace. Minnow. Roach. Gudgeon. 
Species caught in 2010: Barramundi. Giant Trevelly. Moray eel. Indian sea catfish. Mangrove Jack. Deccan Mahseer. Humpback Mahseer. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Bass. Pike. 
Species caught in 2009: Chub. Perch. Pike. Pacu. Thai Striped Catfish. 
Species caught in 2008: Barramundi. p-i-k-e-y sea bream. Indian sea catfish. Guitarfish. Mangrove Jack. Mahseer. Squid (Not strictly a fish but it took a lure !). Emperor Sweetlip. Black Spot Snapper. Moray eel. Spangled Emperor. Bluecheek silver grunt. Yellow striped emperor. Vanikoro sweeper. Pike. Perch. Brown trout. Chub. Atlantic salmon.


#8 Matthew Simmons

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 12:45 PM

Thanks, Matthew

 

If oxygen is the problem, I guess weir pools could be a part answer?

 

On the subject of hemp and caster (or hemp and tares) I associate these particularly with float fishing, which I greatly enjoy, but I'm a bit limited at present with my eyesight particularly as dusk comes on. Has Mat or anyone else tried these using ledgering?

Hemp and Caster is great for legering as well.  Simply dropper it in to the swim and then fish with a feeder (with hemp caster mix) over the top.  Hookbait can be a rubber caster with 2 to 4 real ones superglued to it or a bit of meat (subject to crayfish activity).  Used to work a treat on the Kennet when it had barbel in it.



#9 chesters1

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 03:55 PM

The Wey is well down so the shallows fast and clear ,i tend to fish the holes and leave the streamer weed as its very thick this year .
Not done well at all the usual trout and small chub but a surprise grayling only a tiddler but nice ,i suspect the EA have been electro fishing again they pop up now and again a remove a few dustbins full and give them to someone else i guess?
Need some rain soon the ponds outlet has all but stopped not done that for several years but i have seen the water down 3ft before now so its not desperate yet

Believe NOTHING anyones says or writes unless you witness  it yourself and even then your eyes can deceive you

 

There is only one opinion i listen to ,its mine and its ALWAYS right even when its wrong

 

Its far easier to curse the darkness than light one candle

 

Whitby scallops caught by scottish boats best that money can buy,the nearer the shore they're dredged the better they taste


#10 Ken L

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 07:20 PM

Just to chip back in on the roach thing, the consensus seems to be that the best of the roach fishing is to be had from the beginning of September. You want 4-8 feet of water which usually means fishing downstream of Bewdley. Hemp and casters or (if you want to be more selective, hemp and tares) trotted under a stick float would be traditional but I admit that I used to enjoy fishing a 7 or 8m pole line to hand.


Species caught in 2017: Siamese carp. Striped catfish. Rohu. Mekong catfish. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima.  Black Minnow Shark. Perch. Chub. Brown Trout. Pike. Bream. Roach. Rudd. Bleak. Common Carp.

Species caught in 2016: Siamese carp. Jullen's golden carp. Striped catfish. Mekong catfish. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima. Alligator gar. Rohu. Black Minnow Shark. Roach, Bream, Perch, Ballan Wrasse. Rudd. Common Carp. Pike. Zander. Chub. Bleak.
Species caught in 2015: Brown Trout. Roach. Bream. Terrapin. Eel. Barbel. Pike. Chub. 
Species caught in 2014: Striped catfish. Pacu. Giant gourami. Clown knife fish. Rohu. Siamese carp. Amazon red tail catfish. Arapaima. Roach. Bream. Perch. Rainbow trout. Chub. Common Carp, Ide. Brown Trout. Barbel. Mekong catfish. Jullen's golden carp. Alligator gar. Java barb.
Species caught in 2013: Mangrove Jack. Barramundi. Blubberlip snapper. Baracouda. Malabar grouper. Yellowfin Trevally. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Roach. Pike. European Eel. Bleak.
Species caught in 2012: Northern whiting. Moray eel. Barramundi. Snakehead murrel. Silver razorbelly minnow. Deccan Mahseer. Malabar mystus. Deccan rita. Spotted Malabar Grouper. Mangrove Jack. Indian sea catfish. Brown Trout. Chub. Perch. Roach. Rudd.
Species caught in 2011: Indian sea catfish. Sardine. Barramundi. Mangrove Jack. Deccan Mahseer. Humpbacked Mahseer. Yellow Fin Trevelly. Giant Trevelly. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Pike. Atlantic salmon. Dace. Minnow. Roach. Gudgeon. 
Species caught in 2010: Barramundi. Giant Trevelly. Moray eel. Indian sea catfish. Mangrove Jack. Deccan Mahseer. Humpback Mahseer. Chub. Brown Trout. Perch. Bass. Pike. 
Species caught in 2009: Chub. Perch. Pike. Pacu. Thai Striped Catfish. 
Species caught in 2008: Barramundi. p-i-k-e-y sea bream. Indian sea catfish. Guitarfish. Mangrove Jack. Mahseer. Squid (Not strictly a fish but it took a lure !). Emperor Sweetlip. Black Spot Snapper. Moray eel. Spangled Emperor. Bluecheek silver grunt. Yellow striped emperor. Vanikoro sweeper. Pike. Perch. Brown trout. Chub. Atlantic salmon.