TWO of the biggest late summer dace ever caught form the Bristol Avon could turn into record breakers, the captor has revealed.

Fish identification expert Dr Mark Everard, associate professor of ecosystem services at EWE, fished a local stretch of the upper Bristol Avon near his home in Great Somerford, Wiltshire for specimens of 1 lb and 1 lb 1 oz in a great bag.

Dr Everard who wrote the book ‘Dace: The Prince of the Stream’ explained: “Due to family commitments in the evening, I could not fish into dusk so was limited to two hours with the sun still shining, albeit I did target well-shaded swims.

“The river was low and at lethargic pace despite heavy overnight rain.

“I was targeting roach and had a few, but I hit a shoal of big dace. As well as the brace of one-pounders, I had several others not a lot smaller.

“I used simple tactics, pre-baiting with a pile of bread mash into several likely swims, then returning later with quivertips to use with mini feeders filled with liquidised bread, and bread flake on a size 12 Kamasan B520 hook to 2.5 lb bottom.”

Dace record potential in winter

Mark added: “The upper Bristol Avon is one river I would target were I intent on a national record dace this winter.

“These bigger fish were females that would put on over 20 per cent body mass in spawn by March. That would take them substantially over the 1 lb 2 oz 8 dr Bristol Avon river record I set in 1996 that was equalled in 2009, and even nudging the British record of 1 lb 5 oz 2 dr.

“I missed most of last season through a major knee operation, so catching a brace of 1 lb-plus dace is fabulous comeback to form for me, for the Bristol Avon and an inspiration for the coming winter,” he enthused.

His catch was featured on the hallowed Fish of the Week page of Angler’s Mail magazine, also winning him £100 of top tackle from Korum via the magazine’s Korum Specimen Cup.

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