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Anglers' Net

Does The Otter Deserve Such Bad Press?

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Yes he did!

 

"The rivers I fish are the stour and the gipping."


Growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional :-)

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My apologies for not noticing initially I think that info was added in a later edit.


Eating wild caught fish is good for my health, reduces food miles and keeps me fit trying to catch them........it's my choice to do it, not yours to stop me!

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how about a little pre-empt re the cormorants before the usual repost of them coming inland, europeon, etc, can we have your take on the, specis, sub-specis Nick, don't think i have seen that one from you yet? :)


Free to choose apart from the ones where the trust poked their nose in. Common eel. tope. Bass and sea bream. All restricted.


New for 2016 TAT are the main instigators for the demise of the u k bass charter boat industry, where they went screaming off to parliament and for the first time assisting so called angling gurus set up bass take bans with the e u using rubbish exaggerated info collected by ices from anglers, they must be very proud.

Upgrade, the door has been closed with regards to anglers being linked to the e u superstate and the failed c f p. So TAT will no longer need to pay monies to the EAA anymore as that org is no longer relevant to the u k . Goodbye to the europeon anglers alliance and pathetic restrictions from the e u.

Angling is better than politics, ban politics from angling.

Consumer of bass. where is the evidence that the u k bass stock need angling trust protection. Why won't you work with your peers instead of castigating them. They have the answer.

Recipie's for mullet stew more than welcomed.

Angling sanitation trust and kent and sussex sea anglers org delete's and blocks rsa's alternative opinion on their face book site. Although they claim to rep all.

new for 2014. where is the evidence that the south coast bream stock need the angling trust? Your campaign has no evidence. Why won't you work with your peers, the inshore under tens? As opposed to alienating them? Angling trust failed big time re bait digging, even fish legal attempted to intervene and failed, all for what, nothing.

Looks like the sea angling reps have been coerced by the ifca's to compose sea angling strategy's that the ifca's at some stage will look at drafting into legislation to manage the rsa, because they like wasting tax payers money. That's without asking the rsa btw. You know who you are..

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My apologies for not noticing initially I think that info was added in a later edit.

No it a was there the edit was because this tablet put to many t's in predator


Smile they said life could get worse, I did and it was

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No it a was there the edit was because this tablet put to many t's in predator

Then my apologies, I just missed it then :rolleyes:

 

It would appear that the Stour has been the subject on here before...also the Gipping...http://www.anglersnet.co.uk/forums/index.php?/topic/2869744-strange-happenings-on-the-suffolk-stour/page-1

 

Also I Googled both rivers, it seems that both rivers are producing excellent catches for some!

 

Water levels seem to be the biggest factor as both rivers appear to be used as balancing rivers (especially the Stour) for reservoir levels etc. This can have a massive negative impact on fry recruitment!


Eating wild caught fish is good for my health, reduces food miles and keeps me fit trying to catch them........it's my choice to do it, not yours to stop me!

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I wasn't entirely sure where I stood on the otter debate. The article was very interesting. The fact that no otters have been introduced since 1990 was what shocked me most, a lot of people I speak to on the bank say about 'all these otters being released' which I now know (assuming the article is fact) to be wrong.

 

Late last year I saw my first otters when fishing, one on the pond when perch fishing near dark, when he popped up in front of me, another time on the river when one went into the water on the opposite bank from where I was fishing and the last time when one appeared in my swim on the river. A friend also saw one on boxing day in the same area. Oddly they all appear to be sighted in the top half of the river, which is generally quicker and slightly shallower, and I have heard no reports of otter sightings on the bottom half which is slower.

 

Very few big chub have come out of the river this season, which I know people blame the otters for. However looking at the match reports the weights of silverfish caught this season have been up to 18lb, which is a lot of small roach, chublets, trout and dace to be caught in a few hours fishing. Whether that implies that the otters have eaten the bigger fish and not the smaller ones I don't know. A few weeks ago a couple of bigger chub were caught in a match on the bottom half of the river, which is one of the only times bigger chub have been caught this season, and in an area where there are no otter sightings, does this mean anything, I don't know.

 

The river I speak of is the river Isle, a small river which is in most places narrow and shallow, and it does make me wonder whether 2 or 3 big otters could potentially do a lot of damage to the river.

 

I don't know what effect the otters have been having on the river, if they are responsible for taking the bigger chub then why, after eating them, would they not move onto the smaller fish, which are continued to be caught in large numbers. I don't even know if there is any way to tell what an otter may or may not eat or which size or quantity of fish it will eat from a river.

 

One thing that a lot of people have told me however, and correct me if I am wrong, is that otters are like a fox in a chicken hut, they will kill everything, even if they only eat one or two chickens. I know this is an animals instinct, but on a small river would several otters have a detrimental effect?

 

Dave


As famous fisherman John Gierach once said "I used to like fishing because I thought it had some larger significance. Now I like fishing because it's the one thing I can think of that probably doesn't."

 

 

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how about a little pre-empt re the cormorants before the usual repost of them coming inland, europeon, etc, can we have your take on the, specis, sub-specis Nick, don't think i have seen that one from you yet? :)

 

Well it's a funny one Barry but, a fishless river won't have fish predators obviously. If it has many fish predators then it must have a healthy stock of fish! if predator numbers are overloading the prey stocks then, one of the first things to go (I would think) would be fish predators (as in pike etc.). Reading through some angling reports it would seem that the Stour in particular is stuffed with the things!

 

So, here we have a river that has allegedly declined in its angling quality yet can support large numbers of pike, cormorants and otters...zander and perch as well apparently!


Eating wild caught fish is good for my health, reduces food miles and keeps me fit trying to catch them........it's my choice to do it, not yours to stop me!

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I wasn't entirely sure where I stood on the otter debate. The article was very interesting. The fact that no otters have been introduced since 1990 was what shocked me most, a lot of people I speak to on the bank say about 'all these otters being released' which I now know (assuming the article is fact) to be wrong.

 

Late last year I saw my first otters when fishing, one on the pond when perch fishing near dark, when he popped up in front of me, another time on the river when one went into the water on the opposite bank from where I was fishing and the last time when one appeared in my swim on the river. A friend also saw one on boxing day in the same area. Oddly they all appear to be sighted in the top half of the river, which is generally quicker and slightly shallower, and I have heard no reports of otter sightings on the bottom half which is slower.

 

Very few big chub have come out of the river this season, which I know people blame the otters for. However looking at the match reports the weights of silverfish caught this season have been up to 18lb, which is a lot of small roach, chublets, trout and dace to be caught in a few hours fishing. Whether that implies that the otters have eaten the bigger fish and not the smaller ones I don't know. A few weeks ago a couple of bigger chub were caught in a match on the bottom half of the river, which is one of the only times bigger chub have been caught this season, and in an area where there are no otter sightings, does this mean anything, I don't know.

 

The river I speak of is the river Isle, a small river which is in most places narrow and shallow, and it does make me wonder whether 2 or 3 big otters could potentially do a lot of damage to the river.

 

I don't know what effect the otters have been having on the river, if they are responsible for taking the bigger chub then why, after eating them, would they not move onto the smaller fish, which are continued to be caught in large numbers. I don't even know if there is any way to tell what an otter may or may not eat or which size or quantity of fish it will eat from a river.

 

One thing that a lot of people have told me however, and correct me if I am wrong, is that otters are like a fox in a chicken hut, they will kill everything, even if they only eat one or two chickens. I know this is an animals instinct, but on a small river would several otters have a detrimental effect?

 

Dave

No Dave, this is completely wrong. The only reason that foxes will kill all of the hens in a run is because the chickens can't get out. The fox will return time and again to remove all of the animals that he has killed. Unfortunately, what usually happens is that he is disturbed on a return trip...he is either frightened off or shot...so, loads of dead chickens that have seemingly been killed for "fun". The fox will eat his fill, and bury the surplus to be eaten in times of hardship...they have a strong constitution and will eat well decomposed food that they have buried!

 

To digress a little, I was working down near Yateley a few years ago. I was watching from my digs window at a flight of stag beetles. The light in my room was off so I was not easily visible to the outside. A fox came into the garden, regurgitated a duckling and a blackbird and leapt around on the drive and lawn, gyrating and twisting as it caught the flying stag beetles. It bit off the 'antlers' and crunched up the rest. It stayed until the beetles stopped flying. About two hours later I went outside to load some gear in my Land Rover and disturbed the same fox, it had come back to pick up the duckling and blackbird!

 

Anyway, back to otters...It is much more likely that the otters would take the smaller fish before the larger ones...unless the larger fish were particularly susceptible to predation for some reason...perhaps they'd been caught by anglers and were recovering from their ordeal?

 

More likely is that fish have moved, got wise to baits, a better food source is available down/upstream, it's a coincidence...otters (all predators) get blamed for destroying their prey at some point, sometimes temporary imbalances happen. I have not seen anything like it on the rivers I fish...or lakes, the last otter I saw was on Llangorse lake last autumn, didn't stop two of us netting 7 pike though. If you want to see predators, take a trip over their...it's a predator hotspot. Herons seemingly every 30 feet, more cormorants than in the rest of the UK ( :bleh: ), pike to (allegedly) 50lb!!! and I've never blanked there when piking...never caught a bloody silver though, even though I've tried hard....the pike must be feeding on the weed!

Edited by Worms

Eating wild caught fish is good for my health, reduces food miles and keeps me fit trying to catch them........it's my choice to do it, not yours to stop me!

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Worms for 18 years I lived a stones throw from the gipping, worked on the river for a while. Walked my dogs on the river nearly every day sometimes past the pumping station I know about the water abstraction it been going on since the eighties.

For the last 6 years I have lived half a mile from the Stour.

As for producing excellent catches for some search on google it must be so, just remember I have fished, walked both rivers for a while now.


Smile they said life could get worse, I did and it was

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And I have similar conflicting stories with anglers on rivers I fish! Some blame otters and cormorants for all kinds of ills. The fact is, native predators will not damage fish stocks in a healthy, balanced ecosystem.

 

The myth bandied around by PAG and 'jump-on-the-bandwagon' anglers that believe otters are rampaging, vermin, decimating (killing one in ten by the way) our waterways is nothing short of laughable excrement.....Well, it would be laughable if so many people didn't believe it. It has got blown completely out of proportion. Imagine, a few tens of otters were introduced into a handful of waterways more than a dozen years ago. If one believed some of the angling gutter press or the John Wilsons and Bob Roberts of this world we might as well all take up golf tomorrow. Rivers and species and catchments go through cyclic events, they suffer minor upsets in balance. These might be nothing to do with predators at all, they might be a combination of factors, they might be one factor that nobody has noticed.

 

Check recruitment rates for the rivers you are talking about and compare them to graphs of Gulf stream temperature, water depth, flow rate etc....you'll see some surprising trends.....not caused by otters!


Eating wild caught fish is good for my health, reduces food miles and keeps me fit trying to catch them........it's my choice to do it, not yours to stop me!

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