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  1. #1

    Default The term "bumping fish"

    I know this term is very often used when someone strikes and feels a bump or bump and wriggle and the fish is lost. The anglers usually conclude that the rod is to stiff/powerful and has simply pulled the hook out of the fish's mouth on the strike.
    I may well be on my own here but for the biggest part I don't believe that's the case.
    The reason I say that is because I have used all manner of rods for trotting and still water float fishing (even legering) and no matter how powerful a rod i've used I don't bump fish because of it's power or stiffness. If using a powerful rod and fish are hooked properly on the strike they are more likely to be pulled through the water rather than the hook be pulled free. Manys the time i've struck and had smaller fish literally pulled clear out of the water but the hook has held fast!
    Obviously the fish were hooked properly and not just nicked under the skin. If a fish is just nicked very lightly, no matter how soft or light actioned the rod being used then the chances are the hook will simply pull out on the strike, or seconds after striking which gives the bump effect or the bump wriggle effect. Sometimes lightly hooked fish can be played back and landed but more often than not the hook comes free at some point as the fish is being retrieved.
    What i'm trying to say is, I think most of the fish that are "bumped off" have been "bumped off" because they just weren't hooked properly and it has next to nothing to do with the power of the rod being used.
    In my experience the majority of fish that I have lost to hook pulls or "bumping off" have been grayling and whilst i've been using a lighter actioned or soft actioned rod. In order to stop loosing the fish with the soft rod I struck harder and played the fish harder. Striking harder drove the hook home and by playing them harder I stopped them having any loose line which was allowing them to throw the hook.
    The above is my own opinions on bumping fish....
    Last edited by tigger; 28-02-2020 at 09:03.

  2. #2

    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    I can't say I've found it a problem. And if it does happen, I'm not inclined to blame the rod. It seems more likely that gear is not set up to register a bite properly, or the strike is timed wrong or somehow badly executed.

    I can remember that when I fished local canals mainly, in my first 10 years of fishing, skimmers and bream could be tricky fish to catch as they seemed more prone to come off the hook, one way or another, than other species.

    I think one reason bigger fish can come off when set up with a light hook for smaller fish is that a light hook can open up, or "spring" as they say, and let a fish off. Because the hook looks ok on inspection, this can leave an angler puzzled.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    We've had the discussion before and, as you know, to a significant extent, I disagree. I've no doubt some fish are bumped due to a poor hookhold. Even a switch from barbed to barbless is likely result in more bumped fish. However, if you really wish to see an increase in bumped fish, use a rod with an inappropriate action or power. Some fish would be bumped regardless, but an appropriate rod and hook choice will minimize any bumping that might occur.

  4. #4

    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    I agree in part. Sometimes no matter what you do or what you use results in too many 'bumped' fish Especially roach & dace (for me). For whatever reason the fish just aren't 'having it'.

    But I suspect using a rod which is too soft/slow, and so not actually setting the hook, is worse than a rod which is stiffer/quicker.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    I regard bumping off as something that happens in the first part of a second on the strike when you feel the fish and its gone just as quick.

    As others have said it happens frequently with roach and dace.

    Roach in particular seem to have the ability to turn a maggot over on the hook and mask the point. I think this causes the most bumping as the hook point is covered.

  6. #6

    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    Quote Originally Posted by sam vimes View Post
    We've had the discussion before and, as you know, to a significant extent, I disagree. I've no doubt some fish are bumped due to a poor hookhold. Even a switch from barbed to barbless is likely result in more bumped fish. However, if you really wish to see an increase in bumped fish, use a rod with an inappropriate action or power. Some fish would be bumped regardless, but an appropriate rod and hook choice will minimize any bumping that might occur.

    Yup, you and me have talked about it several times but I posted the topic as it's pouring down with rain, blowing a gale and people might be interested in it.
    I don't think you and me will ever have the same conclusion, no doubt plenty people won't agree with my opinion, as I said, it's jmo on bumping fish.

    Chris, I have used inapropriate rods and never had any problem bumping fish off at all.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    Quote Originally Posted by tigger View Post
    Chris, I have used inapropriate rods and never had any problem bumping fish off at all.
    Yep, you've said before. However, I suspect that your penchant for large hooks with multiple maggots means that you barely hook the stamp of fish that are most prone to being bumped. Absolutely impossible to prove, but my suspicion is that fish most likely to be bumped are on the smaller side. I would also suspect that your liking for more through actioned rods when fishing rivers may be playing some part. Even the differences in the way you strike will alter your perception. I'll happily accept that you don't bump many fish. However, that's a million miles away from proof that inappropriate rods can't be the cause of bumped fish.

    On the roach water I fish through winter, I've occasionally had issues with bumping. I've no doubt that sometimes it's because they are being stupidly finicky and hook holds are poor. Barbless hooks and hooks of an inappropriate size may also be a factor at times. However, I can reduce bumping to an absolute minimum by using the right rod. I've not changed my terminal tackle n many years on this water. I have changed my rod of choice a few times in an attempt to minimize losses. I've gone from fairly standard 13' waggler and got steadily lighter and shorter. The choices in this direction aren't huge, nor are they particularly easy to find. Until the Browning Sphere Hotrods usurped it, the Drennan Super Crystalight was my weapon of choice. There's no doubt in my mind that both resulted in less bumps and more fish on the bank.

  8. #8

    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    Quote Originally Posted by sam vimes View Post
    Yep, you've said before. However, I suspect that your penchant for large hooks with multiple maggots means that you barely hook the stamp of fish that are most prone to being bumped. Absolutely impossible to prove, but my suspicion is that fish most likely to be bumped are on the smaller side. I would also suspect that your liking for more through actioned rods when fishing rivers may be playing some part. Even the differences in the way you strike will alter your perception. I'll happily accept that you don't bump many fish. However, that's a million miles away from proof that inappropriate rods can't be the cause of bumped fish.

    On the roach water I fish through winter, I've occasionally had issues with bumping. I've no doubt that sometimes it's because they are being stupidly finicky and hook holds are poor. Barbless hooks and hooks of an inappropriate size may also be a factor at times. However, I can reduce bumping to an absolute minimum by using the right rod. I've not changed my terminal tackle n many years on this water. I have changed my rod of choice a few times in an attempt to minimize losses. I've gone from fairly standard 13' waggler and got steadily lighter and shorter. The choices in this direction aren't huge, nor are they particularly easy to find. Until the Browning Sphere Hotrods usurped it, the Drennan Super Crystalight was my weapon of choice. There's no doubt in my mind that both resulted in less bumps and more fish on the bank.
    During the summer months I catch hundreds of dace, many being proper tiddlers. I’ve found however many maggots on the hook the tiddlers have no problem squashing them into their mouths. What does stop the tiddlers engulfing the maggots is the size and gape of the hook. They can squash maggots but can’t squash the gape of the hook. I’ve found most tiddly fish I catch, including minnows can get a 14s superspade in their mouths but a size 12’s is too wide for many of them.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    I would also say sharpness of hook can play a part in it, I fished a match once, bumped a few off one after the other ,put a new hooklength on, same dia line and same length hooklength and same sized hook. Problem solved, didnt bump anymore off By the way I was fishing a pole, and kept with same topkit as well

  10. #10

    Default Re: The term "bumping fish"

    i'm surprised that the Super Spades don't create any issue as they have a slightly inturned 'beak' point. I'd have thought a straight point would bump less.

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