Rain for the month was about average; however river levels remain generally low.
The work party at Coultershaw was a great success with a large amount of tree debris being removed from the river.
A good number of Barbel have been coming from the river and these have been supported by some good silver fish catches and plenty of Chub.
There have been fewer reports of Trout this month but good silver fish and Chub catches have been reported from all along the stretch.
The tree that was in the river at the lower end of the Coates stretch has now been removed by the EA.
I have heard of another couple of Barbel catches from Fittleworth over the last month but they are certainly not a frequent as Coultershaw, however silver fish catches are generally excellent. The EA survey confirmed what a number of anglers have experienced and that is the prevalence of Pike along this stretch. I suppose if you have a good level of prey fish you are always going to have a lot of predators.
Probably the best fish from Watersfield over the last month was a Bream of 7lb 3oz. Other anglers have reported Bream from small skimmers up to around 4lb but nothing of this size. There have been a few Barbel caught and the silver fish catches continue to be good. We hope that a path will soon be cut through the grass to make the lower swims more accessible.
Unfortunately I have not been able to get to Stopham over the last month and reports are still sketchy. If you have fished this water please let us know how you got on.
The low water levels experienced over July have meant that we have seen increased weed growth in the Middle Pond again. Our fishery management team have been doing some weed clearing and have also increased the dye level slightly in an attempt to slow it down. Despite the weed there have been some excellent mixed bag catches from this pond proving that our plan to move it to a more mixed fishery rather than a carp water are bearing fruit.
Anglers are reporting good sessions on the Tench Pond with good mixed bags of Tench and Crucians together with plenty of Rudd.
The match pond is producing good bags of mainly Bream and Carp and quite a few Roach are being caught as well.
Stemps & Cart
Both ponds have fished well over the last month. I went for a late afternoon walk round the ponds a couple of weeks ago and Carp were being simultaneously played in 3 swims on Stemps and one on Cart. For those that prefer the silver fish some very good Roach have been coming from both ponds.
The towpath is now completely open again so all parts of the canal can be fished. There are plenty of silver fish to be had from virtually any peg. Although it has been noted that some areas have very high numbers of small Rudd on the top and it is almost impossible to get a small bait through them. However if you can get down then there are some good Roach to be caught. Although we have not had any reports of bigger skimmers or Bream quite a few skimmers of around 2 – 3 years old are being caught so the bigger fish must be there somewhere. We are also seeing a few Gudgeon which appeared to be largely absent over the last couple of years. It is always good to see Gudgeon as they are a sign that water quality is generally good. Finally small Perch are being regularly caught and there is the chance of better ones as well. Two anglers who were fishing drop shotting tactics reported follows from a number of Perch in the 1 – 2lb bracket although they did not get any takes.
The session number of Bream has gone up to 22 in a recent match, weighing in at a magnificent 80lb plus. It is also interesting to see quite a few year classes of skimmers through to Bream turning up as well. This all bodes well for the Bream fishing in Petworth Park for the years to come. As well as the Bream good Tench and Crucians are caught regularly: although one angler tells me that although he has regular bags of Bream he has yet to have a Crucian – has anyone got any suggestions?
We have also seen a few good Perch coming out, there are plenty of small ones but the odd fish of getting on towards 1lb have also been caught.
I have seen some good sized Rudd being caught over the last few weeks but no one has submitted one for our record fish table. My best has been a couple of ounces, so I’m too ashamed to submit that. Everyone seems to be speaking of the Carp in the Granary in glowing terms. The general consensus is that these are really good looking, well conditioned and hard fighting fish – what more can you ask for. Over the last month as well as some of our stocked Perch from 18 months ago putting in an appearance we have also seen a few that are obviously last year’s fish, so our Perch are breeding!
Please don’t forget to fill out the log books at our venues, it really helps us in compiling these reports. If you have any photographs of your catches that you would like to share please forward them to us HERE.