Sim­ple wag­gler tac­tics are or­der of the day

Angling Times (UK) - - SOUTH -

HE start of the sea­son is the per­fect time to tar­get a sum­mer favourite which is mak­ing a wel­come re­turn to Bri­tain’s wa­ter­ways.

Golden-flanked rudd are right up there among the most beau­ti­ful of all the fresh­wa­ter fish we tar­get, and one an­gler who par­tic­u­larly en­joys the chal­lenge they set is young Dren­nan all-rounder Ryan Hay­den.

Over the past few sea­sons Ryan has spent the sum­mer months ex­plor­ing po­ten­tial venues in a quest for big rudd, with sev­eral spec­i­mens to his name.

“This is the time of year that I look for­ward to most,” says Ryan, “And I usu­ally spend the first day of the sea­son roam­ing among the net­tles and veg­e­ta­tion search­ing for big rudd.”

East Anglia is blessed with a huge num­ber of fish­ing wa­ters, and many of the spec­i­men rudd present have seen lit­tle or no angling pres­sure. Rudd are also quite ag­gres­sive feed­ers and tend to be rea­son­ably easy to catch once lo­cated. And therein lies the big­gest chal­lenge!

“Find­ing the shoals of big­ger fish usu­ally means a lot of walk­ing, so a good pair of boots is a must.” says Ryan.

“But they’re not that dif­fi­cult to find, es­pe­cially in the shal­lower sec­tions where the wa­ter will be warmed by the sum­mer sun. What’s more, the big­gest fish of the shoal is nor­mally the first in

line for a good feed!” he adds. two Grippa Stops ei­ther side, and a size 12 Wide Gape hook to 5lb ny­lon at­tached loopto-loop style. The hook size may seem quite big, but as he favours quite large, vis­i­ble baits such as bread crust or sweet­corn, the size of hook and its wide gape help en­sure a good hookhold ev­ery time.

“It can be quite windy in East Anglia and the ex­tra weight of the pel­let wag­gler en­sures you can hit the tar­get ac­cu­rately ev­ery time,” he says.

When he is fish­ing with crust (which floats), Ryan sets the wag­gler around 2ft away from the hook, but when us­ing sweet­corn he will go deeper and al­low the hook­bait to fall for as long as pos­si­ble be­fore touch­ing the weed-cov­ered bot­tom.

If there are not too many birds about, he will walk along the top of the bank fir­ing sin­gle pieces of bread flake into the mid­dle of the river or drain ev­ery 25 me­tres or so. This en­ables him to cover more ground and quickly find a shoal of feed­ing rudd.

“Once a shoal of big­ger rudd are lo­cated I will then cast my sin­gle hook­bait di­rectly into the area,” says Ryan.

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