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Pike Fishing Season

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Posted on behalf of Bob. Please add all replies to this thread:


I have just taken up pike fishing and heard it's a season thing ie (winter). Is this so, or can I fish all year round?



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As I've got the EA site open in another window, I'll answer this one as well.

For river fishing, the coarse fish close season applies and you can't target pike (irrespective of the method) from 15 March to 15 June inclusive.


You can pike fish year round on stillwaters and canals unless they are classified as SSSI's or unless rules have been applied by the controlling body to limit when you can fish.

A list of SSSI's by region is included with the local byelaw's detailed here.


Lots of anglers fish to a self imposed pike closed season on grounds of fish welfare and personally, I tend not to target pike on stillwaters in the hight of summer because of the the low levels of disolved oxygen in the water significantly decrease the chances of the fish surviving capture and release.

I also avoid static deadbating when the weather is warm because of the increased risk of deep hooking active fish.

Species caught in 2020: Barbel. European Eel. Bleak. Perch. Pike.

Species caught in 2019: Pike. Bream. Tench. Chub. Common Carp. European Eel. Barbel. Bleak. Dace.

Species caught in 2018: Perch. Bream. Rainbow Trout. Brown Trout. Chub. Roach. Carp. European Eel.

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. Jullien'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.

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there is a "season" bandied about historically its october onwards till the weather improves ,its not just a time clutched from the air but a time when pike can be the best species to catch for the weather.

even clubs hold on to this vague historical time ,ours stipulates that livebaiting or deadbaiting can be only used after this time (i expect its in many handbooks) but pike can be caught year round but i use that time for catching those fish reclusive in colder times knowing that pike will be about when times are hard (hopefully)

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Pike are targeted in the winter because it's when they are at their greatest weight not when they are most active/hungry


IMO if you want good sport pike fishing do it lure fishing in the summer on rivers

Edited by Neil G
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Pike are generally targeted in the winter because as a very delicate species they can be prone to gassing up when the waters dissolved oxygen content is low i.e. in the summer.


the problems can arise when people use light tackle and on hooking, the Pike endure a long drawn out fight. heavy tackle and unhooking competance usually means that the time between hooking and returning is minimal and the Pike goes back healthly. light tackle and beginners often means a dead Pike.


The traditional Pike season starts on October 1st and ends March 15th, however as theres no closed season on many still waters these days a lot of Pikers end their pursuit at the end of March.


for more information on Pike angling take a look at www.pacgb.co.uk


Hope this helps.

Edited by Dave Smith

PAC RO - Birmingham Region 1 www.Brum-Pikers.co.uk


Internet Officer - National Anguilla Club www.nationalanguillaclub.co.uk


Very Average Blog - www.PredatorAngling.co.uk

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Nice one Dave. Of course, you could stick to the "Rule of Nature" method. Wait until the first winter frost, then it's Pike Season. Of course, if you wait here in the South, you could wait a very long time. As far as I can remember, we only had 2 frosts this winter!

Dunk Fairley

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Isn't gassing up a phenomenon when catching pike from very deep waters?


Again, I think a lot of people target pike in winter for the weights..i.e going for trophy fish, not for the sport as from experience spring summer is when you get a lot more takes etc. Depends what you want out of your fishing really, I'd prefer to roam and catch more fish in the warm than sit behind buzzers in the cold waiting for a 30 to turn up...horses for courses.


Never had any problems catching and returning pike safely on rivers on deads or lures but don't fish stillwaters for pike in the summer...have heard that can be detrimental to the fish due to algal blooms and weed.

Edited by Neil G
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Isn't gassing up a phenomenon when catching pike from very deep waters?


I would say that strictly speaking "gassing up" is a result of pike comming up to fast from deep water (a bit akin to the divers "bends").


The physiological problems common in warm water piking are normally absorbed oxgen depletion and lactic acid build up.Many pikers use the tem "gassed up" as a generic term for any exhausted pike.


Incidently anyone reading this who does catch a genuinely "gassed up" pike please ignore the old wives tales of piercing the swim bladder or sticking things down the fishs throat! Only thing Ive found has any effect is to put them in a sack/tunnel (not the best for them at any time but in this case kill or cure) and attach this to your anchor and lower the lot back down to a depth deeper than you took the fish for an hour or so.Then bring back up slowly with several 15minute pauses.


Not in a boat? Then dont worry as Ive never seen a gassed up pike from the bank even when fishing in 50' of water.

And thats my "non indicative opinion"!

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Well I've never experienced problems piking on the rivers in the summer but I'm sure things could be different on stillwaters come June/July.


I've heard this time of year is good for Catfish, could be an nice alternative for the warmer months on lakes without having to resort to carping!

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