Top carp fishery ruined by illegal catfish
● Illegal catfish stocking ends carp sport ● Carp to be removed
APOPULAR day ticket carp water has been lost after the thoughtlessness of selfish anglers who stocked it illegally with catfish.
Rogue catfish fans have caused major disruption to Earlswood Lakes, in Solihull, West Midlands, forcing the Canal & River Trust to carry out a complete makeover to remove 40 of the illegal non-native species.
John Ellis, their national fisheries manager, explained: “The illegal dumping of the catfish at Earlswood also represents a threat to the adjacent Site of Special Scientific Interest on the River Blythe, and the Environment Agency has insisted on their removal.
“We’ve been able to tie that in with important valve works taking place, but it’s really frustrating that, as a charity, we’re faced with picking up the tab.”
While the works are taking place, the Trust has also decided to move some of the larger carp from the lakes to other Canal &
River Trust waters.
“We fully understand that moving the carp might not be popular with some carpers, but we have to do what is right for the fish, the lakes and the local community.
“By moving them to less intensely fished and pressured waters, the fish can continue to live well into old age.
“We also want to re-establish Earlswood as one of the best match fisheries in the West Midlands, as it was in the 1990s and 2000s.
“Over time the fish have grown large and are now too big for match fishing, but these works will enable us to make Engine Pool a really highquality, small carp and bream fishery once more.”
But one upset carp angler told Angler’s Mail: “It is disgusting. They are removing the larger carp, which go to 39 lb. They don’t need to be removed.
“I was told in strict confidence that the local residents don’t like night fishing, so they’re saying they’re doing maintenance, but the truth is they are moving all carp out to keep the residents happy. It is shocking news for thousands of carp anglers.” – Master Your Fishing is a new series starring Matchman of the Year Lee Thornton, and available on YouTube. Throughout this high-production-value series, Middy-backed Lee aims to turn anglers into match masters. Lee said: “There are a lot of videos out there that are just promotions for various brands or products – and there are also only a few good one-off videos. The idea behind Master Your Fishing is to put together a series of episodes that will take anglers to the next level in fishing.”
● Magnet madness – the new craze for magnet fishing gave a shock to Marie Kirkman, who found and took home an unexploded World War Two shell from the Llangollen Canal at Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, near Wrexham, North Wales. Bomb disposal experts were forced to close streets at her home in Bala, in Gwynedd.
● Overseas giant – James Grant set a new PB with this 80 lb common carp from Bay Lakes, in France, on a CC Moore Live System wafter over pellets, corn, boilies and groundbait.
■ Carp anglers aren’t happy that the big fish are being removed at West Midlands venue Earlswood Lakes, but the fishery is being turned back into a match mecca.