‘Cru­cian Month’ win­ners re­vealed

The best ‘Catch a Cru­cian Month’ photo win­ners

Angling Times (UK) - - WELCOME - TONY GRIGORJEVS Se­nior re­porter

ANGLING Times can this week re­veal the re­sults of a com­pe­ti­tion aimed at rais­ing the pro­file of one of the UK’s most iconic fish.

The pho­to­graphic con­test was run in con­junc­tion with ‘Catch a Cru­cian Month’ – an ini­tia­tive aimed at rais­ing aware­ness of the trou­bled species – and at­tracted hun­dreds of en­tries.

Af­ter hours of de­lib­er­a­tion by a panel of species ex­perts, a stun­ning shot of four fish in the net caught from Sur­rey’s Marsh Farm by Ring­wood’s Richie Martin scooped the ‘Cru­cian Pic­ture’ award, while seven-year-old Michael Ewing, of Go­dalm­ing, was handed the ‘Ju­nior Cru­cian An­glers’ ac­co­lade.

Stock­port an­gler John Spils­bury’s in­spir­ing im­age of a tra­di­tional float next to the lily pads won the ‘Scenic Waters’ cat­e­gory, while Andy Lewis from War­wick­shire bagged the ‘Spec­i­men Cru­cian’ sil­ver­ware for a 2lb 5oz fish. He said: “I think it is a bril­liant idea and I en­tered to try to help raise aware­ness of true cru­cians. I never ex­pected to win, but I am de­lighted I have.

“Un­less some­thing is done, cru­cians could be ex­tinct in a decade. I think this cam­paign is just what is needed to pro­vide a bright fu­ture for the species.”

Num­bers of ‘true’ cru­cians have de­clined at an alarm­ing rate in re­cent years due to hy­bridi­s­a­tion with other species. This is the rea­son the Angling Trust has teamed up with the As­so­ci­a­tion of Cru­cian An­glers to launch the Na­tional Cru­cian Con­ser­va­tion Project (NCCP).

One of the project’s many ob­jec­tives is to en­cour­age fish­ery own­ers and clubs to stock more true ex­am­ples of the species

while also per­suad­ing an­glers to tar­get them reg­u­larly.

Trust Cam­paign Co­or­di­na­tor Martin Sal­ter played a big part in the pro­cess, and he said: “We have been de­lighted with the re­sponse to ‘Catch a Cru­cian Month’ and the ac­com­pa­ny­ing photo com­pe­ti­tion.

“Many en­tries en­cap­su­lated the charm and beauty of cru­cians and the de­light­ful and in­ti­mate waters that they in­habit.

“There is no doubt that the project has in­spired many clubs and fish­ery own­ers to cre­ate be­spoke fish­eries and think more care­fully about how stocks are man­aged.

“I’m sure this com­pe­ti­tion will go from strength to strength in fu­ture years.”

Renowned big-fish an­gler Chris Turn­bull has a se­ries of big cru­cians to his name and is an am­bas­sador for var­i­ous schemes ded­i­cated to their pro­tec­tion. He said: “They are one of the UK’s most loved sum­mer species, but within a short space of time they have be­come highly en­dan­gered.

“It is re­ally im­por­tant that we work to pre­vent their demise, and the first step must be the ed­u­ca­tion of an­glers.

“This com­pe­ti­tion is a great step for­ward in that pro­cess.”

‘Scenic Waters’ win­ner John Spils­bury ‘‘Cru­cian Pic­ture’ won by Richie Martin. WIN­NER WIN­NER ‘Michael Ewing’s win­ning Ju­nior pic­ture. WIN­NER

‘Spec­i­men Cru­cian’ win­ner Andy Lewis. WIN­NER

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