Colin Mitchell, the popular Angler's Mail website blogger, shares his views on record fish in the wake of this near-70 lb carp. Read AM print magazine this week for the exclusive latest on this and other major angling news.
ANGLING’s crazies were out in force last week – and they have once again done nothing to help the reputation of our sport.
It’s amazing how one big fish can cause so much outrage and stupidity among people who we all believe care for angling.
Just in case you missed it – the carp (pictured above) was of record-breaking proportions, and it was caught. It was fattened up in a holding pool and then released… and it got caught some weeks later.
There were also ‘death threats’ and other nasties against the angler who caught the fish.
Eh? Death threats! How ridiculous is that?
And of course the national media latched onto that straight away and crazy anglers put us in the headlines for all the wrong reasons.
Now a death threat is a pretty serious thing so let’s hope that the law is brought in to deal with these people and their mad outpourings.
Fattened-up record fish
First, if a fish is stocked and caught legally, then why shouldn’t it be a record, if it is landed on rod and line in Britain?
Now, if a fish is fattened up in a pool like has happened in this latest case at RH Fisheries, where they are masters in carp – where’s the difference there to many of the fish that are bred, reared and then stocked into waters everywhere?
A few decades ago there were similar accusations when big trout were reared and released in certain fisheries on days when big-name anglers were due to fish.
These guys hit the headlines for landing a record giant – but did any of us really think it was a supreme effort?
Of course we didn’t! It was skill but not as we like to know it.
But we didn’t get all hot and bothered and start sharpening our filleting knives!
The only people who suffered with these big fish were the captors – whose reputations were slowly eroded by such captures.
Are record fish a big deal anymore?
I think the whole record fish thing is no longer as prestigious as it used to be.
A number of records are now open to claims after previous bests were ditched; certain species don’t even have records and the authenticity of other biggest-fish have been questioned.
Is a record fish caught from a venue where it is known to live really as good as a massive specimen of the same species caught from a water where it was unknown?
A 40 lb carp is a monster of a fish yet in many parts of England it is no longer rightly recognised as the superb creature that it is.
In my book a 20 lb carp is good – even more so if it comes from a place such as a canal or a river and has been carefully tracked down and then tempted to a bait.
Big or small we should be appreciating what we catch and where the fish is caught.
I believe the vast majority of anglers do accept that once a fish of any species reaches a certain size it should be recognised as a superb specimen.
I’d bet most of you would be more than happy with a 1lb roach, 3lb chub, 4lb tench, 20lb carp or even a 2oz gudgeon. I know I am…
For the vast majority of us angling is something that creates a great social life, a superb hobby or sport and can be enhanced in the public eye when they learn how we look after the environment among other things.
Maybe it’s down to stupidity or jealously but we need to stop this silly bickering in our sport.
GOT A VIEW on this huge carp catch or about record fish and big fish in general? Please email your views to: firstname.lastname@example.org You could get published in print in Angler’s Mail, the best weekly magazine.