The Southsea Marina Cod Competition was held this Saturday 22nd October. 35 members fished from 17 boats. It was tough going, ENE wind and against tide in the afternoon. Only five cod caught unfortunately, but there were some around at least. Tim Andrews won with a cod of 12lb 6oz, congratulations Tim.
I have been gathering snippets of information from around the Solent and cod are being caught in the usual places – Bramble, Stokes Bay, Gilkicker and around Culver. Fingers and Nab area seem not to be so productive, although that winning cod came from the Fingers. Be prepared for roaming conger at this time of year, some quite large ones are feeding on open ground and in daylight so don’t be surprised if you hook into one. It may be a coincidence but there seems to be a few more bull huss reported than usual. By the way squid are a shocking price due to the poor catches leading to high market prices. Pout and whiting are viable alternative baits, in fact some good fish have been caught on them and I suspect more would be if more people used them.
From Steve, “not a report as such” was the title but it reads like a report so here it is!
“A lot of boats waiting on the outer pontoon on Sunday morning ready to go out, including mine! I guess you went out a bit later when the gate opened? Unless you had an incredibly early start. (No, I was too lazy for an early start).
Went to Sandown Bay to try to get some shelter from the NW wind, which thankfully eased during the day, and the afternoon was fantastic weather wise. I struggled with the big tide and using the heaviest weights I’ve used to date, even with braid, but I managed to catch my first bass of around 3.5lb (stunning looking fish which I put back having thought I’d taken a quick shot with the GoPro – but failed somehow…), 8lb thornback a 1.5lb ballan wrasse (another first for the boat) and a load of pouting – no doggies all day. I would have been quite happy catching pouting on the lighter rod all day to be honest. Anyway, hopefully I’ll be able to post an actual report next time if I sort out my cameras. (I have found a photo from the archives for you)
I think the new look a feel of your revamped website is great by the way.” (Thank you!)
I went out with Richard on his boat from Southsea Marina Sunday 2nd October. Even though it was a big tide, we decided to go east in search of Plaice. Great weather, although a bit sloppy at first, but conditions were OK from around 10.00am. Our first mark produced just Ballan wrasse, so we moved on to our regular plaice mark and first drift I landed a Brill, which was weighed back at the marina on the Southsea Marina Angling Clubs scales at 2lb 15oz. The fish was taken on Rag and Squid. The next couple of drifts produced plaice to a couple of pounds, but it went quite quiet once the tide turned. Tried the first mark again on the way back without success. Picture of me with the Brill checking the weight on the boat’s scales prior to weighing in on the SMAC scales. Keith.
After all the shore-side gossip I was hoping for an inshore cod this morning but it wasn’t to be. After trying for a bite-less hour over some broken ground I moved to a useful-looking hole near Dean Elbow. Two hours and two whiting later I decided to move again, and about half a mile away I spied some frenetic bird activity. They were working a bank which I hadn’t taken much notice of previously, but it was certainly holding fish today. I drifted down onto them with the tide and used a small shad on a light spinning rod, catching bass one or two per drift. They were not large, up to about 2lb max and none were keepers, but it was good sport and made up for the boredom of bottom fishing for nothing.
Back in the marina, I found many in the Solent had similar experiences but those that ventured further out did OK, the Overfalls being particularly productive today. I also heard anglers were seen taking more than one bass. You won’t be popular with other anglers or the Feds if you are one of them.
Not a catch report exactly, more like spreading marina gossip. Chap I met today has been catching cod to 12lb off Gilkicker and within a mile or two of the shore which makes me wonder if they come inshore first and then sort of back-fill into the deeper marks later on. They certainly seem to catch them off the beach before we catch them further offshore. Another conversation earlier was about Culver Spit. Apparently cod turn up there to feed on squat lobster and move closer to the shore along the spit as the season progresses. Having said that I have yet to catch a cod on Culver Spit but that says more about my fishing than where the cod are. I don’t have any photos of cod to post but I do have a photo of Gilkicker.
On Sunday we went round to St Catherin’s to take advantage of the weather and small tides. We anchored in a hole to try for Bass. Ray caught one of about 7lb (pictured above) and I had one of 5lb. I also caught this Bull Huss.
Lovely weather and a great day !
We didn’t have a booking today despite it being perfect conditions and a perfect tide, so myself and Caroline went out alone. We arrived at our chosen mark and delayed fishing for 20 minutes whilst we watched the dolphins we had stumbled upon. As soon as we started fishing we were hitting cod. Because of the slow drift speed we were managing 3 cod per single drift each.
Catch, unhook, release, back down and repeat. We only keep the gut hooked fish and return the rest. We had a few Pollock mixed in but primarily it was cod after cod. Interestingly they were all sub 20lb. Whereas we normally get some larger ones, these were all sub 15lb fish. Could it be the larger ones are heading inshore to spawn??
Caroline was yet again the one to catch the out of the ordinary species and landed a lovely condition 7.5lb John Dory. We did our best to return it, but it wouldn’t go back. It wont go to waste, we will find a recipe somewhere which will hopefully do it justice. (look on the White Fish recipe pages, any recipe calling for fillets would be great.)
OK, this is not the Solent but I thought you might like to see this. We have just spent 10 days in Cuba and I deliberately didn’t go fishing, this was family time. However, I couldn’t resist sticking my nose in….On the 30 minute ferry ride from one of the islands I noticed a bunch of the crew trolling off the back of the ferry with some large and very battered Rapala-type lures. They were hand-lining with what looked like 400lb mono, trolling the lures about 50 metres behind the ferry. Half-way across there was great excitement as they landed this very nasty looking barracuda.
We popped out today not knowing what we were going to do. With the scarcity of mackerel we even took some frozen fillets with us should we need them. Once we got past Bembridge the swell was rolling and the weather grey and dank. But with forecast set to improve we pushed on with an eye on the sea state.
We got to our mark and it happened from first drop…
Cod… then Pollock, then Cod and so on and so on.
We have no need for Cod or Pollock, so we attempted to return all we could, however the swim bladders blow so easily on Pollock, 8 ended up given themselves up to the coolbox, and the cod we so greedy 12 ended up gut hooked. None of them went to waste as all went to feed friends.
Out with Richard and Peter on Richard’s boat yesterday. Went to Outer Nab Rock area to fish one of our summer marks. A bit slow, with rays and dogs. However, Peter landed a tagged Spotted Ray. Not the usual tag I’ve seen on Bass, but a Labeled Nylon Cable Tie inside a blue plastic tube attached to the rear of the disc close to the tail. Written on one side of the label was “328” and on the other side what looks like “CIACH”. See photos attached.
Have you seen or heard of such tags being used? The fish was released with the tag still attached.