Make hay while the sun shines on the river banks

The nights are lengthening, there is distinct nip in the air after sundown and time is running down towards the autumn equinox and mass migrations of fish that change the whole face of broads angling for the remainder of the coarse fishing season.

There is barely more than a month to enjoy the absolute best of the mid to lower tidal rivers Yare, Bure and Thurne before the threat of an autumn salt water surge triggers the instinctive urge that sends roach and bream, as well as pike and perch, upstream towards a safer, saline free habitat.

Soon the hotspots to head for will be highlighted on these pages.

In the meantime, all broads' anglers, match and pleasure, should embrace the policy of making hay while the sun shines.

Contestants lining up along the banks of the River Yare at Saturday's tenth round of 13 of the Nisa Feeder Masters certainly followed that well used idiomatic proverb to net some splendid catches along the Beauchamp Arms match length. Winner at peg 142 was Doug Botley (Daiwa Angling Direct) with 37lb 8oz that included bream to over three pounds and roach to 1lb.

Paul Abbott (Deben) at 22 lifted out a similar catch of 32lb 6oz, followed by the league sponsor Nick Larkin (Nisa Feeder) with 30lb 4oz from 137.

A few miles north across the floodplains, Sunday's Norwich Teams of Four championship on the River Bure at St Benets was a close fought affair with the top three divided only by 1lb 8oz.

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The trophy was won by Daiwa Angling Direct Gold (C Kemp, T Anderson, M Hanks, Jeanette Halliday) with an aggregate of 50lb 13oz.

The 25lb 12oz contribution by top individual Nick Larkin assisted Nisa Feeders to runners up with 50lb 2oz and third place went to Pete Swan with 17lb 9oz helping Angling Direct Black into third spot with 49lb 5oz.

On the club scene Norfolk and Suffolk Veteran Paul Manthorpe seems in danger of suffering arm strain if he continues his weekly exercises at Bergh Apton.

Last Thursday he winched out a 171lb winner just days after scaling a 165lb 11oz haul from that venue.

At Abbey Waters, Colin Reynolds headed the Costessey Crown card with 135lb 5oz, while at Mill Farm, Simon Denmark of Norwich completed a Sunday and Monday double with 127lb and 136lb.

Best at Cross Drove was G Burden with 143lb 12oz and David Cooper (PWA) was top at Railway with 116lb 6oz. On the big fish waters, Taswood produced its heaviest carp of the year – a personal best common of 39lb for Norwich rod Marty Hall.

Rollesby rod George Nichol also banked his personal best at Taswood, a mirror of 36lb 12oz, while Mike Plane of Sprowston noted a 30lb common.

The top fish at Catch 22 were a brace of commons scaling 33lb 4oz and 33lb for Steve Mallet, while at Swangey fish of the week was a 31lb common for Clive Sinclair.

Blickling Lake is one of the most picturesque estate fisheries in Norfolk. However, a recent visit to the 20 acre lake revealed hardly a rod on site. 'The National Trust put the day permits up without warning,' revealed one angry OAP on the bank.

'What with the increased cost of living and transport, many of the old boys are feeling the pinch.'

No one at Blickling Hall was available for comment.

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