WELCOME to the Wednesday blog – each week filled by Angler’s Mail magazine’s HQ, focussing on happenings in the wonderful world of fishing, including latest tackle.

There will be something for everyone – pleasure fishing, carp fishing, match fishing, specialist fishing or anything else. 

This week’s Angler’s Mail HQ blog is by news reporter Thomas Petch.

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I’VE just got back from a dream holiday to sunny New Zealand with my London-based but definitely kiwi girlfriend Andrea – and would recommend it to any British angler.

But I found it to be a bit of a culture shock as the kiwis just don’t get our coarse fishing yet I think most of us would get into their sea and game fishing.

Being made up of two long narrow islands, they are surrounded by ocean and everyone realistically able to get to it so you can see why they are so sea fishing mad.

I reckon a million of the tiny four million-strong nation fishes!

And especially with the sport on offer and from what I could tell it is not over trawled to death like our British coastline.

Snapper fishing seems to be the big thing out there and even they have magazines dedicated solely to the tasty sea fish, a bit like carp are the vogue species here.

But don’t mention carp over there! They not keen on illegal species as you may have picked up on the tough stance on imports which many of us have seen on TV with Border Patrol.

I was pleased to land a 20 lb eagle ray on a carp rod and 12 lb line and Aberdeen style hook baited with squid strip, and got chatting to the lady and her sons who watched me land it after a long fight.

It turned out her last job had been to eradicate carp along with tench and roach amongst a few other species that had been released by UK anglers missing home!

And chatting to the fishing-mad locals, the thought of sitting it out for hours and days on end for crafty fish AND then put them back was completely alien.

The kiwis are a tough sporty bunch and they ideally want to get a tasty dinner at the end of a session, not a photo of a bloated carp!

And I suppose with the great fishing there was to be had you could see why.

I went boat fishing a few times with my Andrea’s dad Al on his trailer boat and it was action galore.

We had some nice keeper snapper but the thing that really struck me was just how many undersized baby ones there were out at sea but also from the shore.

Literally every cast you’d have a bite, often from smaller ones ripping the bait off, but it made me realise just how poor our sea fishing is.

Our equivalent species would be black bream and while I’ve caught a fair few of them, they just aren’t in anything the same numbers.


OVER in New Zealand they also have some really decent fish from the shore including kingfish which I failed to tangle with but would definitely target if I ever moved there. Seeing them strike at baitfish was amazing, just a shame they were about 300 yards away!

I managed a small sting ray (pictured left) plus that 20 lb eagle ray but I’d also like to get some shark fishing in next time I’m there as to the locals they are just a ‘nuisance’!

They have huge numbers of quite a few shark species yet get ignored by the locals but with so many game fish including plenty of marlin about, I suppose I understand why.

Mind you the Jaws music went through my head when I went out swimming in a wet suit on a neighbouring surf beach in Auckland to where a man was killed in a shark attack just two weeks before.

It was the first death from a shark attack for about 30 years but that famous tune still haunts you when you look like a fat seal and you know great whites and bronze whalers will have been exactly where you are at some point in the past and future.

The 24 hour flight split between two journeys is a pain but worth it to anyone keen on catching  loads of fish in probably the most scenic country in the world – I certainly recommend you save up and I can’t wait to go out again at some point soon.

And with some great personal news that my girlfriend is expecting a baby in August, I’m sure we’ll have to go over next year to show the baby to all of Andrea’s family and friends.


Tough EA action – great to see in this week’s printed magazine and also on the BBC1 One Show that the EA are taking the threat of the invasive alien species topmouth gudgeon seriously.


Freezing weather – When will this horrible winter end? I thought when I got back from New Zealand the weather would have perked up with some nice Spring days. It couldn’t really be any worse!







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