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When I lived in Surrey there was a small stream that ran nearby that was full of modest sized chub, around 1.5lbs. If I chucked a few dog biscuits in the effect was immediate, there would be plops and bangs up and down the stream as the chub took them off the surface. Though they weren't easy to catch as they would often be lying in the midst of an overhanging bush. But when I've done the same thing on the Kennet or Thames there's been no immediate response, and I haven't persevered.

But in a recent thread BoldBear mentions some of his better chub being caught on floating crust, either popped up off the bottom or on the surface. It would be interesting to hear people's experience, as I think it's an enjoyable form of angling. Am I right that it works best in fairly shallow streams? And what about time of year? I've always assumed summer is best, but in Peter Stone's book 'Old Father Thames' he insists you can catch them in midst of winter this way.

And what about practicalities? I'm sure a fly rod would be good, but this is not easy when there are a lot of trees to get caught up in. Do you use a bubble float?

john clarke

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I used to live very near The Holybrook (moved in 2003) and the chub in here responded VERY well to floating baits (bread & Chum mixer) had many a session chasing the freebies downstream and could often get upto half a dozen in no time at all (looking back through my diaries I see my best haul as 11 chub in a morning). This venue ran very close to a housing estate and I'm sure the chub saw lots of bread thrown in for the wild fowl.... Not found a venue since where they've took bait off the top so freely so I'm sure this was a major factor!

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I noticed the same in gostrey meadows its a popular duck feeding spot  and standing on the bridge you can see them taking bread off the top ,this maybe because the waters not very deep though?

Fish certainly link humans and ducks to food look at any swim recently vacated if theres ducks looking for scraps the fish will be aswell,hmm perhaps they only see the ducks and follow them around ?

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I’ve caught some big Chub on crust either on the surface and suspended a few inches off the bottom.

Ive caught a few Chub using a buoyant crust up to just over 5lb near Throop Mill on the Stour suspended just a few inches off the bottom, and a few using buoyant crust on the river Kennet at Thatcham Theale and Newbury; both off the top and suspended close to the bottom, but in general when using crust on the surface it’s usually been on slightly smaller streams and small rivers in Hertfordshire like the upper Lea upstream of Hertford all the way up to Wheathamstead and the river Colne, plus the River Ivel and the river Ouzel in Beds.

Ive got no doubt that they would respond to small pieces of crust on other rivers especially when there is streamer weed and fish regularly looking for food on and near the surface; however I wouldn’t expect it to be quite as good on deeper and more clearer rivers, but who knows it might be just as good at certain times?

Keith

Edited by BoldBear

Happiness is Fish shaped (it used to be woman shaped but the wife is getting on a bit now)

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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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I've targetted chub on floating bread and floating casters on both still waters and rivers and at the right times it can work well.

I have targetted very shy still water chub on floating casters and had great success doing it.

I've also had chub on still waters using bread, floating, sinking, popped up etc but I found that on waters where the chub are shy,  floating casters in conjunction with lighter lines and small hooks are the better option.  I had to catty out a lot of casters, cast beyone them and wind my hookbait  back in amongst them.  This also works well for roach!

I rarely use floating baits on larger rivers and prefer to use them on smaller clearer rivers where it's possible to actually see the fish suck in the bait.  The method seems to work better on smaller and shallower rivers from my own experience.

 

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Thanks everyone. I'm starting to get enthused! But how do you get the bait out to them, do you use a bubble float?  And Tigger, how do you tell with casters whether it's yours they have taken? I sometimes find it hard to see clearly even with dog biscuits (carp fishing).

Has anyone any experience of doing it in cold weather?  I'm assuming I'll have to wait till the summer, Peter Stone's book notwithstanding.

john clarke

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23 hours ago, The Flying Tench said:

Thanks everyone. I'm starting to get enthused! But how do you get the bait out to them, do you use a bubble float?  And Tigger, how do you tell with casters whether it's yours they have taken? I sometimes find it hard to see clearly even with dog biscuits (carp fishing).

Has anyone any experience of doing it in cold weather?  I'm assuming I'll have to wait till the summer, Peter Stone's book notwithstanding.

I can’t talk for Tigger, but I occasionally chase shoals of Rudd along the surface using floating Caster on the estate lake. I keep them feeding on the surface by catapulting some floating casters over them, and I use a ‘semi loaded’ onion waggler with the float set at around 18” away from the the hook with no shot between the float and hook; which allows me to easily cast way past the feeding shoal then wind slowly back amongst the Surface feeding Rudd. I sometimes use a floating Caster and a sinking Caster together which usually floats just under the surface, or I just use a single floating Caster on the hook which I have left out in the air to dry out a bit.

And when I’m using a smallish floating crust for Chub (or Carp) on a stream or small river I just freeline it downstream, or I sometimes stop it from drifting too far downstream by laying my line over some streamer weed or other weed lying on the surface. and I usually use a 12ft or 13ft specialist rod.

Ive only used this method in the warmer months, and I use it when there has been signs of Chub picking off food as it drifts past them in the current; or for Rudd; drifting in the surface tow; and they’ve also had a nibble at a floating bait that I’ve catapulted or thrown out near them or drifted past them in the current.

Keith

Edited by BoldBear

Happiness is Fish shaped (it used to be woman shaped but the wife is getting on a bit now)

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4 hours ago, The Flying Tench said:

Thanks everyone. I'm starting to get enthused! But how do you get the bait out to them, do you use a bubble float?  And Tigger, how do you tell with casters whether it's yours they have taken? I sometimes find it hard to see clearly even with dog biscuits (carp fishing).

Has anyone any experience of doing it in cold weather?  I'm assuming I'll have to wait till the summer, Peter Stone's book notwithstanding.

 

When using floating bread on the river I usually freeline it, and because I mostly use floating bread on small rivers distance isn't an issue.  Although you can get a piece of crust a fair distance by giving it a quick dunk in the water and then underarming it out.

Very often I freeling bread on stillwaters also.  On still waters I very often fish bread on a running leger set up, this allows the bread to float to the surface so long as enough line is released to allow it to pop up.  Once popped up you can tighten up and even wind down to varying levels in the water column or even wind right down to bottom if need be.

This method also keeps your bread from drifting.

When using floating casters I often use a drennan puddle chucker float which is pre weighted and you can change the weights to suite.  I use no weight on the line and if I can't see my caster I have to rely on the float, although a wind or two of the reel can move the caster enough to get it back into focus.  Another thing I do is attatch a piece of peacock quill or a waggler of the desired length via a rubber top and bottom and add a weight either side so the quill lies flat on the surface.  The peacock quill is good as it stands out being white. 

Edited by Tigger
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