Colin Mitchell is back with his weekly coarse angling blog, exclusively here for Angler's Mail. He looks on the upside of latest sad news and pellet-obsession.
THEY (although I am never quite sure who ‘they’ are) tell us it is the season to be jolly…but if you are an angler you might be starting to wonder about that in recent weeks.
So, in order to try and cheer you up, I’m going to try and turn some negatives into positives!
It was sad to read in Angler’s Mail that my old mate Kenny Wright is going to shut the doors on the various lakes at his MBK Fisheries in Hampshire.
For those who don’t know hey are non-commerical commercial fisheries which can offer some superb sport – but not always easy venues, so they do create a lot of interest and challenges.
Kenny has had enough of moaning anglers and also those who have booked a day’s fishing and not turned up.
Sad to see him go but the positive is that someone will turn up to buy or rent these venues and fishing should not be lost for good.
And for those upset Kenny – well do you really want to be anglers? Bit of give and take usually helps…
Bad news and good news
More bad news in the UK angling world has been the plethora of fishing tackle shops that have been closing down.
No surprise here because of the growth of commercial venues that now have their own shops and also internet sites often offering better deals that many smaller shops can handle.
Bad news of course is that some of us might have to travel that bit further to pick up those bits and pieces and some fresh bait.
The good news is that the constant challenge of supply and demands should see all anglers maintain the great deals they now get on tackle.
Good gear has never been cheaper and there is plenty of it about.
I am however concerned about the shrinking amount of places to be able to buy livebait such as maggots and worms.
We are going to become a national of tinned and bagged bait anglers if we are not careful…
But let’s be positive once again! In the longer term the fish will get sick of the same old things and that should lead to maggots and worms becoming more freely available.
Pellets, pellets, pellets
EVERYWHERE you look or listen nowadays the first bait on most anglers’ lips is… pellets!
There now appear to be more shapes, sizes, flavours and different textures of pellets on tackle shop shelves than any other bait you can imagine.
It used to be boilies in shapes, sizes, colours and flavours that dominated those shelves.
But now the pellet is No.1 and no longer do we have just fishmeal, trout or coarse pellets in a handful of sizes.
That has to be good when you think back to the concerns of the amount of fishmeal that was being used up to produce these baits.
It’s good news, of course, for the angler who has loads of baits to choose from – so long as he isn’t totally confused about what to offer on the hook and what to feed!
Use others’ tunnel vision to your advantage
Maybe you are like me and believe that a lot of anglers now have tunnel vision and can’t bring themselves to put anything on the hook or hair other than a pellet when they visit a commercial?
At this time of the year pellets will still work but ask any top anglers what they think and maggots and worms will be a vital part of their armoury during the winter.
Both of these baits catch anything that swims and when the going gets touch the wrigglers get going!
And unlike pellets and boilies there’s not a mass of choices to confuse you.
Big maggots, pinkies and – if you must – squatts. You can colour them or get them basically in red, white and yellow!
Oh ok, add a few drops of your favourite flavour if you must… just a little helps!
Lobworms, brandlings, redworms, dendrobaenas…it’s the same with worms, a nice simple choice…