Keep an eye on the future with codling

SEA FISHING: This warm blast from the south-west has helped sport on most of the region's beaches.

The low pressure coupled with consistently strong winds has kept the sea nicely coloured but easily fishable and it's good to hear of a few decent fish reported.

James from Angling Mad in Lowestoft gave me a call to let me know about several decent codling from Corton to Kessingland with a liberal sprinkling of fat, healthy small fish among the two and three pounders. At only 6-8oz apiece these small codling represent the next couple of winters' sport if we're lucky. A decent hook and bait size will reduce the number you do catch and those that you do, please do your best to make sure they go back in one piece.

Lots of small codling have been reported again from Aldeburgh and Orford, though there are a few better ones feeding among them. Hopton, Gorleston and Yarmouth beaches have produced a few latterly, although the 100 odd anglers fishing the Gorleston Tackle Open must have wished they'd turned up a day or two earlier.

Simon Roberts carded 1lb 6oz to see off a strong field and record his first open win.

Anglers fishing further round have managed a few among the bits too. Odd codling have been caught at Bacton, Mundesley and Trimingham, although flats and pin whiting are still dominant.

Mat Lawes managed some of the fabled big whiting that show up on the shingle around this time of the year.

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He caught four good ones with a couple better than a pound apiece in a busy little session under the cliffs at Weybourne.

Salthouse, Kelling and Cley continue to produce a few flats with the chance of a school bass too.

It's great to be able to report an upturn in sport, however small it may be, increasing the optimism for a half decent spring run. Traditionally the spring run doesn't normally begin until the end of February and into March, let's hope this early start is the precursor of a long and steady run rather than another false dawn.

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