CONDITIONS at the weekend were perfect for boat anglers, with many taking advantage of the good weather and reaping the rewards for their efforts.
Some big cod and ling taken by boats fishing out of the Wear.
Private boats had good sport with plenty of mackerel along with cod to 8lb and ling to 12lb. Hokkis, shads and squid/mackerel baits tempted most of these fish.
Local charter boat The Sapphire had a great day on Sunday, fishing over the inshore wrecks, taking 50 good fish, which included cod between 6lb and 17lb and ling from 8-13lb.
On the way out to the fishing grounds, two sharks were spotted on top of the water, but they were soon chased away by a pod of dolphins.
If that wasn’t enough, a large minky whale jumped out of the water just 10 yards from the boat on its return journey!
Shore anglers are also enjoying good sport with plenty of mackerel showing from all piers in our area, with daylites and spinners taking most of the fish.
Seaham North Pier is again producing dogfish during the hours of darkness along with a few sized whiting. The mackerel turned up on Roker Pier on Saturday, which is a pity as it closed to the public at the weekend. Hopefully the weather will hold out so that the repair works can be completed as soon as possible.
Anglers fishing the Rat House Corner on the Old North Pier have taken a few codling to 2lb along with flounders and undersized coalfish.
The rock marks at Marsden have started to give up codling with the best going to 5lb. Crab is the best bait for these fish with anywhere between Camel’s Island and Target Rock worth a look.
South Shields Pier has again been the best mark in our area with mackerel, coalfish, codling, plaice and flounders all being taken in good quantities.
Bags of up to five codling to 6lb have been taken, with local angler Alan Heeley catching two of more than 4lb and one 6lb specimen in a session last Tuesday night. Plaice taken on ragworm bait have also shown in decent numbers.
Fishing at Middens on the north side of the mouth of the Tyne, Lew Marsden took a cracking 3lb 2oz plaice on ragworm bait.
Last Tuesday’s Ryhope Sweepstake had 23 anglers out, with seven weighing in 14 flounders. Chris Hossack triumphed with 1lb 3oz, followed by Lee Burton (1lb 2oz), while Lee Burton and Paul Richardson were joint third with 1lb ¼oz.
Wednesday night’s Fisherman’s Locker competition at Claxheugh had eight anglers taking part.
Lenno Fench won with seven fish for 175cm. Runner-up Tommy Tate grabbed six fish for 146cm, then Steve Ragstraw took third with four fish for 113cm, which included the longest fish – a 36cm flounder. Joe Gibson was fourth with four fish for 112cm.
Seaham SAC fished their Potter Nighthawk competition on Saturday night, with 40 anglers competing and 23 bringing 43 fish to the scales.
Paul Edwards took the top spot with six fish for 5.66lb, runner-up Steven Laverick had three fish for 3.98lb, then Pat Carroll was third with four fish for 3.96lb. Davie Stoker finished fourth with three fish for 3.75lb.
The heaviest single fish was Laverick’s 2.38lb dogfish. The pairs event went to Edwards and Dave Wood with eight fish for 6.75lb. All the dogfish were returned safely to the water.
This weekend sees the Rutherford’s Cono-flex two-day open competition take place (1-5pm on Saturday and 1.30-5.30pm on Sunday). The competition will be fished in two zones at the Copthorne Hotel and the British Airways Business Park.
Entry is £30 for the two days with 100 per cent payout. In addition, there is a Cono-flex Flattie Beach Quiver to be won in each zone on both days. This is a measure and release competition with 18cm size limit. All eels are 25cm and the maximum hook is size 4.
Registration is at the Copthorne Hotel car park at 11am on Saturday. More details are available from Bob Gascoigne on 07711 091491.
This Sunday, Little Derek’s Flounder Fanatics competition takes place at Claxheugh (1-5pm). Registration is at the venue from noon.
Tuesday’s Ryhope SAC’s sweepstake is at Lambton Drops (7-10pm).
Wednesday’s Fisherman’s Locker competition will take place at the Business Park in the Wear (7-10pm). Registration is at the venue.