Mackerel galore keep anglers’ spirits up

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MACKEREL gave anglers some good sport on Roker Pier last week (when the weather was favourable!) with bags of up to 30 fish being caught.

Daylights and spinners were the most successful lures from the end of the pier, while further inshore one or two were caught by anglers float fishing.

Float fishing also accounted for a 4lb pollock caught by Ed Turnbull. Another angler lost a 6lb-plus pollock on the lift. Maybe it’s time to take the drop nets with fish this size around.

Andy Copeland also had a bit of success with float fishing, catching two ballan wrasse, the best being just over 1lb.

There have also been reports of a few allis shads coming from Roker Pier. These fish are a protected species and anglers are asked to return them safely to the water.

If you have not come across one, they look very similar to a herring, and are often mistaken for them, but grow a lot bigger. So if you catch a big herring (over 1lb), the chances are it’s an allis shad!

South Shields Pier has also fished very well for mackerel, with anglers catching bags of up to 50 fish in one session. There have also been some good-sized plaice, with fish up to 3lb and bags of 10 fish not uncommon.

Ragworm is the top bait for these fish, with the best area being just before the Blocks on the seaward side of the pier. Good coalfish, dabs and whiting have also shown in numbers, along with codling up to 3½lb (a few of the codling have taken daylight lures meant for mackerel).

The River Wear is still fishing well for flounders on crab and mackerel baits, with Claxheugh and the Business Park being the best spots.

The Tyne has been giving up good bags of eels up to 4lb and codling up to 3lb, as well as whiting and coalfish.

Boat anglers continue to enjoy good sport when they can get out to sea.

The best fish reported this week was a 19lb cod taken on an orange sidewinder shad from a private boat out of Hartlepool.

Boats out of Sunderland have taken lots of mackerel, plus cod up to 11lb and ling up to 10lb.

The Sapphire fished the wrecks seven miles out last Friday and took codling to 5lb on baited hokkis but struggled with the big tides, so they changed to hard ground and fished large mackerel baits on long traces to take ling up to 11lb.

Last Tuesday, Ryhope club competition at Southwick Prom saw 17 fishing and catching 12 eels, 12 flatfish, one coalfish and one cod. Micky Davison won with an eel (2lb 3oz), ahead of John Lovett’s coalfish (1lb 9oz) and Chris Hossack’s 1lb 4oz flounder.

On Saturday, Alberta SAC held an away match at Seahouses and, despite a hard day, nine out of 27 anglers returned to the scales. Joint winners (2lb 4oz) were Mark Daglish and Darren Browne, with the former taking the heaviest fish prize.

On Sunday, the Reelsports Summer League fished at the Business Park in the Wear. The weather forecast was really bad, however it stayed sunny and warm as 14 anglers competed and caught fish.

Andy Rutherford won with 11 flounders (249cm), beating Ian Ainsley’s eel and eight flounders (220cm). The longest fish was Neil Cuttler’s 39cm flounder.

Sunderland Sea Anglers had 18 fishing on Sunday, with half weighing in flounders and whiting. Paul Hossack took first place with a flounder (2lb 2oz), followed by Steve Conlin’s 1lb 5oz flounder. Ryan Hutch and Micky Fish shared third place with 1lb 3oz flounders.

This Sunday. Seaham SAC fish for the Sulgrave Cup (11am-4pm) and Ryhope Summer League fish at the Copthorne Hotel (11am-3pm).

Ryhope’s Tuesday competition will be at Southwick Prom (7-10pm), with entry £5 (someone will watch the cars!).

Tyne & Wear County Angling will host a junior sea fishing competition in the Wear on Sunday, August 19 (2-6pm). Entrants must be aged 17 years or under on August 31.

The £2 entry fee is payable on the day, with all proceeds to be donated to the RNLI. All participants must complete an application form and submit it to the organisers before August 10.

England junior and youth sea angling manager Chris Clarke will attend the event to look out for talented anglers.

This is a great opportunity for junior anglers. More information is available from Ben Thompson at the Angling Trust – email

Looking even further ahead, the Sunderland Shore Angling Festival will take place on Sunday, November 4 (2-6pm).

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