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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Townsend 3 View Post
    The main reason for the 'vanishing specimen river roach' are cormorants.
    You missed out the tiny River Torne when you named your local roach rivers Ron. This river, along with the others you mentioned, was alive with specimens until the last 10 to 15 years.
    All the rivers mentioned, Wensum, Severn etc, all have the odd remaining shoal of specimen redfins that have escaped the black death, but they are isolated cases. If you want to find good roach on the rivers these days, look for stretches that either have an active keeper (who shoots the cormorants) A stretch with lots of trees lining the banks (that prevents them landing and taking off) or a stretch lined with houses or that's popular with dog walkers (human activity scares them away)
    It's no coincidence that when you find such a length of river, good redfins are often present.

    Also take into account abstraction, more barbel being introduced into rivers (I've no evidence that this is a reason, but the rivers can only support x amount of fish) and the reduction of flood relief channels (like the old dead arm off the Idle at Bawtry) and the future of my favourite fish in rivers looks grim.

    Luckily, I do know local stretches of rivers that will allow me to catch roach to well over a pound, but that was once possible from nearly every stretch of every river.

    Superb post..........other things to look for as roach holding areas are bridges, deepish water(2ft plus) and rushes,my own favourite area is a Severn backwater that has these.....plus other human activities just as Michael says.......it keeps the cormarants away and makes a haven

    The barbel debate is something we should chat about elsewhere......probaly a pub lol

  2. #22
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    And as we know, the lower Idle is quite deep. Some areas are in excess of 8 feet.

  3. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron The Hat Clay View Post
    And as we know, the lower Idle is quite deep. Some areas are in excess of 8 feet.
    But if there are no retreats for the roach the black death will decimate them in 8ft Ron.........it was the rushes i was pointing at, the area i have in mind has a depth of 6ft, feeding into rushes.

  4. Default

    Another obsevation I left out is the fact that where you could once catch good roach, there were also numbers of gudgeon.
    I don't know if cormorants take gudgeon, but if they don't, there could also be a water quality issue (perhaps the female hormones via the pill) as well as the black death.

    You're right about bridges Paul. I too have noticed that, especially road carrying ones.

    Thank goodness for the odd gravel pit and 'managed lake' otherwise a big roach making the angling news would be very rare.

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Townsend 3 View Post
    Another obsevation I left out is the fact that where you could once catch good roach, there were also numbers of gudgeon.
    I don't know if cormorants take gudgeon, but if they don't, there could also be a water quality issue (perhaps the female hormones via the pill) as well as the black death.

    You're right about bridges Paul. I too have noticed that, especially road carrying ones.

    Thank goodness for the odd gravel pit and 'managed lake' otherwise a big roach making the angling news would be very rare.
    The road bridges are usually wider, possibly making it difficult for the cormarants to dive and have a clear uniterupted lift to get airbourne.....tho i suspect it more likely to be the structure itself that gives the shelter and cover.

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    There doesn't seem to be much hope for the future does there?

    Nothing much left but sterile rivers.

  7. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron The Hat Clay View Post
    There doesn't seem to be much hope for the future does there?

    Nothing much left but sterile rivers.
    We can only hope Ron......and fight!

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    And join the Angling Trust.

    Those of you who are not members and are reading this thread, join the Anging Trust NOW!


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    Last edited by Ron The Hat Clay; 08-11-2009 at 16:13.

  9. #29
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    Some interesting points guys, my findings echo most of what has been said. No one has mentioned otters yet, or is that a sticky subject?

    I've had some stunning roach over a pound recently and some of them did have cormorant damage, although I haven't seen one yet? Are they working at night when things go quiet? I always thought they roosted up for the night?

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    The times when cormorants are at their most active are first and last light.

    When we used to have our massed cormorant shoots in South Africa we used to throw out the bait, which was bits of trout guts into the margins and sit and wait behind cover with pump action shot guns.

    We got 50 one morning, all African white breasted comorants which can swallow a 4 pound fish in one gulp. Due to our efforts in the late 80s they don't see many cormorants on South African rivers these days.
    Last edited by Ron The Hat Clay; 08-11-2009 at 16:35.

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