Posted: 17th Mar 2013
Sorry there have been no updates over the last 3 weeks but we returned to the UK again, which is the first time we have done so twice in a winter since living in France. No doubt you all saw the weather on the news of the snow storm hitting France and Holland, well you guessed it, we were one of thousands stuck in the north of France heading home and with the car not moving a metre in 21 hours with 3 kids and temperatures down to -11oc in the night, what a barrel of laughs that was!!!!
Back home now and all is good at base camp with the lakes. It's been a very wet winter indeed, but I guess after the last few years being so dry it is needed to replenish the underground aquaferes that in turn feed the rivers & Lakes. I think the fish are starting to wake up with the day light lengths increasing and I have started to introduce feed ready for spring. With the weather being so changeable this year I have left the fish to feed on naturals this winter without putting too much strain on their digestive tract. I don't think the fish gain weight over the winter period anyway from digesting artificial feed and it does them good to use up the fat reserves built up over the previous summer from anglers bait, my aim was never to produce a fishery all about weight/size over all else. The feed being introduced now will just bring them into condition ready for spawning and also give them a additional boost of vitamins around the spring time when viruses are most prevelent.
I will be moving the adult Zander from the winter holding pond this week coming ready for spawning, so I will try and get a few pictures of these toothy predators while carring out the job.
It's raining very heavy again today so there is not too much moving in the animal world at present, but that will all change over the next few weeks. I have managed to locate the Kingfishers nesting site yesterday down on the stream and the bank side below is littered with fish pellets just below the entrance hole. Hopefully I might get chance to take a few pictures this spring when they are back & forth feeding the young.
Only a couple of weeks to go before we kick-off and it is one of our regular groups arriving first, so it will be a warm welcome to the new season ahead.
I never got chance to fish for the wildies in the stream this winter because of the rainfall the stream has been flooded all winter, but I did get chance to wet a line when I returned to the Uk!!!!! No carp fishing I'm afraid but any time on the bank is good for me. I had my annual trip with big brother on a small river we visit each year taking some of the best looking male Grayling you can imagine to 2lb 4oz and 18" in length. Then I had a special invite down to the river Test in Hampshire by Jon Hall, Head keeper on the Broadlands estate. Now that was magic and a real treat taking me back to childhood days of why I first fell in love with fishing, never knowing what the next bite could be was just special. I had a huge Pike turn at the lure only 2 feet from the bank which Jon put at a good mid 20lb which made my knees wobble. I did catch the first pike of the season around 10lb which got my name on the famous chalk board in the main fishing hut!!! Followed by Grayling of 2lb,Brown Trout of 3lb, Chub 3lb+ a first Minnow for years and topped off with a pb Dace of 13oz which was only 2 oz off the seasons best, what a clonker that was. All in all a very special trip and it did recharge my batteries ready for the new season ahead. For anyone intrested with the above I will put the pictures on Facebook so it does not tie in with The Sanctuary Fishery Business. I also have a short video from last year down on the "Wildie stream" when I did manage to catch a carp for the camera, I will see if I can upload to facebook too.
Well roll on summer and hopefully a good year ahead and some stunning fish caught for the punters which will keep everyone smiling, I cannot wait.
Over & out