Ducks and Better Fish

Last updated on May 10, 2021

One of the things I was looking forward to in my first year back angling was fishing in the spring. The last time I was fishing the close season applied to all waters and I would yearn to be on the bank on those warmer spring days when the leaves were showing, the birds singing and the promise of summer was just around the corner. Unfortunately it has not been like that this year as we have been stuck under a high pressure system for weeks. Yes, it has been sunny and dry, there are even cracks appearing in the ground, and while it may have been warm in other parts of the country it is still chilly here with the north and easterly wind coming over the North Sea making me not want to brave the cold too often!

However, I had the chance to go fishing in the afternoon and evening so despite the wind and the cloud which had arrived I took the opportunity to go to my usual lake to see how it fished at that time of day. When I arrived there was no-one else there and I wondered if they knew something that I didn’t. I set up in one of my usual swims so that I could do a comparison and it had the advantage of being a bit sheltered from the wind as well. I had remembered to bring some other bait so put sweetcorn on the feeder rod with groundbait and home made maggots on the float rod. Soon the float dipped and I had my first fish, a baby roach, so far so normal! Then it went quiet for a spell until another small roach pulled the float under.

During this session I was pestered by the ducks again, while I was sitting still they would come right up to me, between my legs and pecking up groundbait that I had dropped and even tapping on the bait box lids to try and feed there. They became a real nuisance as I had to make sure that the lids were on everything including my tackle box as they even had a go at that! I was also worried about hooking one of them when I was re-baiting or filling up the feeder and even considered moving only I thought that they would just follow me to my new swim. The only thing that would deter them was if I waved my landing net in their direction but they would be back as soon as I put it down. If they weren’t on the bank they were in the swim with their friends swimming across the line and making the float bob. Now, I consider myself as an animal lover but these creatures tried my patience and I did begin to wonder how they would go with plum sauce!

Anyway, back to the fishing. I have written before about not getting the feeder right so decided to use a different bait to see if I could attract bigger fish and it seemed to work, the quiver tip pulled round and it was definitely a bite! Unfortunately I missed it but cast out again to the same spot. I caught another small roach on the float which was getting difficult to see as the clouds had now parted and I was looking directly into the evening sun. Sunglasses helped but made everything else a bit dark! Then the feeder rod twitched again and this time I was into a better fish a nice roach which I landed this time. It was getting towards sunset when my phone rang, it was my sister telling me about our parents. They are both in their nineties and their health is beginning to go which is causing problems. We were chatting away when I realised that I couldn’t see my float, I checked the rod tip and the line was jerking about so I put the phone down and struck. I could tell that this was a different fish by the way it felt but soon had it into the landing net where the hook obligingly fell out! It was a small carp which was attracted to the sweetcorn I had changed to for a while. It was the last fish of the day and as the sun slowly slipped under the horizon I took off my dark glasses, packed up and went home.

A slightly better roach on the feeder

So, what did I prove? That the fish didn’t come on to feed in the evening, that I could catch on the feeder and that you can’t get away from life’s problems even if you are fishing! I also decided that I have had enough of the ducks and will go back to trying new waters until I have achieved my target of fishing them all. I just hope that it warms up a bit over the coming weeks, after all it will be May soon and I want to fulfil my dream of fishing on those warm spring days!

A small carp but the biggest fish I have caught this year!

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