Miss­ing out on baby Ber­ties!

Angling Times (UK) - - THIS WEEK -

A LO­CAL an­gler told me the other day that over the past two sum­mers he has had more small bar­bel than in the pre­vi­ous 30 years from the tidal Thames.

Bar­bel av­er­ag­ing 12oz were caught by just about every­one but me in the early 1970s then, in the mid-1980s, the odd fish of 2lb-4lb turned up in matches.

As I only ever match fished and caught a dace most casts, baby Ber­ties al­ways evaded me. Even­tu­ally my pal Tony My­att took pity on my and helped me land my first, fish­ing from his punt.

Af­ter land­ing an 11-pounder I did the ob­vi­ous thing and quit while I was ahead, but there are still lots of bar­bel a 10-minute walk from my front door… and they’re re­pro­duc­ing.

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