IT’S time for anglers to give their spinners a quick polish, get the daylight lures out and head to the pier to enjoy some good sport with the mackerel that have started to appear.
The return of the mackerel will mean that the piers get crowded, so a word of advice – make sure you use a shockleader or that your line is strong enough for the size of lead you are using, otherwise your line will break and you could seriously injure someone.
The general rule of thumb is 10lb in line strength for every ounce of lead. For example, if you use a 5oz lead, then your shockleader needs to be 50lb breaking strain – it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
If the warm weather continues, I think the mackerel will turn up in good numbers on Roker Pier. There have also been some sand eels and small herring coming in on lures; bait fishing anglers have been taking flounders, coalfish and plaice.
The River Wear continues to fish well for flounders, with fish up to 1½lb and bags of up to 12 fish. The best areas have been Claxheugh and the Business Park, with the best bait proving to be crab tipped with a small piece of mackerel.
The top end of the River Tyne has also fished well for flounders, although a lot have been on the small side. The bottom end of the Tyne is still full of undersized codling, which are taking baits as quickly as you can put it on your hook!
Anglers started to catch mackerel on South Shields Pier last Thursday on daylight lures, along with coalfish and the odd pollock on spinners. There have also been some good plaice on the pier, with bags of up to six fish. At the moment, ragworm is the bait for these fish.
Further north, the turbot have started to show at the south end of Druridge Bay, along with some good flounders. Mackerel is the best bait if you are after turbot, and don’t cast out too far. There have been some good codling at Beadnell Point, with fish up to 5lb on crab baits.
Boat anglers have been having a good time of it now the weather is on their side. Local boats have had cod up to 9lb, with most codling being between 5lb and 6lb, along with ling up to 12lb. There seems to be a lot more pollock being taken in the boats this year, with fish up to 11lb.
Squid and ragworm have been quite successful baits, but by far the best method has been fishing with shad lures (blue or orange) on a 6ft to 10ft trace. This accounts for the most fish, as well as the better quality ones.
The best boat caught fish I’ve heard about this week was a 30lb ling taken by Robby Archer, fishing aboard the Debbie1 out of Hartlepool. The fish was taken on a white shad.
For any anglers who have won the lottery recently, the world’s most expensive hooks have gone on sale. With a packet of five costing £1,000, the 24-carat gold patterns are made by a specialist tackle manufacturer who say “the big hooks for sea fishing are expensive, but we can cater for anglers that require smaller varieties which can cost as little as £60 each”. Think I will be giving these a miss!
Last Tuesday, 33 anglers fished Ryhope Club’s match, with 12 weighing in 19 fish. Tommy Tate was top rod with a flatfish (13oz) winning £60. Nick Westgarth narrowly missed top spot with a flatfish (12.5oz) to take second place and £40. Joint third with a flatfish each (12oz) were Andy Rutherford and Mark Redpath, who each won £25.
On Saturday, Alberta Club saw 33 members fishing their competition with 22 returning mostly flounders to the scales, although a nice codling (4lb 5oz) was also weighed in. Ian Hodgkinson triumphed with 11 fish (11lb), followed by Robert Burton’s 10 fish (8lb 10oz) and Eric Bell with six fish (6lb 10oz). This Saturday, Eastenders have an open competition at the Business Park in the Wear (11am-3pm) and on Sunday they will be holding their club competition at the Golden Lion (11am-3pm).
Also on Sunday, Seaham Sea Anglers’ Club fish for the Tuck Brothers trophy (noon-5pm), Ryhope Summer League fish the Tyne Business Park (11am-3pm) and Sunderland Sea Anglers have their competition (noon-4pm).
Tuesday’s Ryhope Sweepstake is at Lambton Drops. Registration is at the venue and entry is £5.
One for the diary includes Amble’s Olympic Torch Open on Sunday, June 10 (noon-5pm), with registration at Amble Angling Centre from 9.30am, with weigh-in at the town’s Radcliffe Club. Entry fee for seniors is £12, with juniors free when accompanied by a paying adult. There is 100 per cent cash payout, with the first prize for the heaviest fish, then on descending total bag weight. One cash prize per angler.
Details from Ken Middlemist on 07594 545535, Tony Cook on 07928 570012 or Jim French on 01665 711007.
0191 565 4183