Waveney Valley: Roach and skimmers come out to play

A nice bit of colour and a pick-up in the flow saw catches increase and the level of satisfaction rise accordingly on the tidal water.

There have been plenty of nice roach on red maggots from the Beccles area with the Quay still capable of giving its best form one day and a couple later dropping down as the shoals persistently run in and out of the river's main flow. When they do settle down it is really healthy skimmers around the 14oz mark that give the biggest bags, but alongside have been some quality roach.

Feeder fishing in the flow of the River near to the Yacht station has been good, too, with 'proper' bream taking bigger baits and averaging around 6lb. Georgie Wells, from Fressingfield, knocked out 21 of these in his sitting as the tide rose and even kept them through the change. These shoals are still concentrated and reluctant to spread themselves – others who sat more than 30 yards away had just one or two bream, but their consolation were the weighty perch who took the worms. Even 20lb of these weighing up to the pound and a half were welcome to the net.

Around Bungay the bronze maggot appeared to be best for roach of 2oz-3oz on a variety of float presentations.

Harleston Club official Nigel Poll reports the continued re-establishment of the dace in streamier sections, with Kessingland veteran Colin Davey taking a 10oz specimen from the Shotford Bridge area, where 40 years ago the irascible Peter Dade weighed one in of 14ozs – at that time a record nudger.


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Further upstream at Billingford the summer EA electro fishing survey showed not one dace, roach or chub present, and a 46pc decline in fish stocks – a fall by nearly a half – over five sampled sites down to just below Wainford Maltings Bungay.

There has been pretty good form at the commercials with the carp back on the feed at most venues in spite of an overall lack of colour. Broome Pits had some of the big fish lads sitting it out for pike, and one of 23lbs was taken from the gin clear B Pit and another of 22 lbs from the narrow channel running by the headland.

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