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Rock fishing

4. Choose heavier float tackle for the rough and tumble of rock fishing. I use the same gear as I use for winter trotting for big chub – large loafer floats, with all the shot bulked a couple of foot from the hook, 4 to 6 lb mono and strong hooks ranging from sizes 12 to 6, depending on the size of the bait. Barbless patterns are a lot kinder on little wrasse, but barbed will hold firm should the bigger predators turn up.
Bait wise, ragworms will catch virtually all marine species and little 2 cm sections are perfect for tiddler snatching, while whole king rags are a more suitable mouthful for bigger species. Sandeels are the key fodder for many marine fish and are an excellent bait to present under a float, especially for mackerel and garfish which actively seek out shoals of these little fish a mere foot or two under the surface.
Little slivers of fresh mackerel also make cracking bait, especially the silver underside which stands out brilliantly in the turquoise water.