Otter

Zerkalo

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They reckon so on FaceBook anyway. One chap reckons Mink. I reckon Otter. It's the Stour as it runs through Kiddie and there's been a restoration project going on where the leader of said project said she wanted to see more Otters.

 

Lee Richards

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It shows signs of classic otter feeding as they always go for the soft tissue and organs first.
 

Robwooly

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Make the most of fishing your weirpool Steve, one species restoration usually means another species demise. Otters V Barbel on a small river tends to end in one outcome.
 

TiggerXFM

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Everytime a barbel is seen dead otters are instantly blamed.
In these conditions..... very low water (in most places), hot weather, spawned out fish and angling pressure you will always get casualties regardless of otters.
 

smiffy

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Both my local rivers are solid with fish. Plenty to be caught all year round.
All I hear is “Those f*****g Otters have killed the river”. “They need culling”.
This often comes from anglers that haven’t fished it for donkeys and never even seen an Otter.
They do cause fish losses but only on rivers that are suffering from other problems. They don’t swim past shoals of Roach and Dace to single out Barbel🤷

That is all I‘m going to say😂👍
 

Zerkalo

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I was going to crack the (h)otter joke. :LOL:

It's said they're difficult to catch above Kidderminster, where I fish it, until Autumn but it makes me wonder if they will make their annual migration this year.
 

smiffy

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I was going to crack the (h)otter joke. :LOL:

It's said they're difficult to catch above Kidderminster, where I fish it, until Autumn but it makes me wonder if they will make their annual migration this year.
When I used to fish in Holland we would not see a Barbel in the April/May visit. Come the return visit in September they were very common on the same stretches we’d fished in April.
I don’t know what the fishing is like in this day and age though. The Dutch had a massive Barbel stocking program kick started by odd big fish dropping down the Rhine.
 

Zerkalo

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Yeah I've told the story before but for the first year or two I fished it all I caught where decent Chub. Everyone who walked past asked if I'd had a Barbel and I was starting to wonder what they were on about, doubting there were any in there. Then autumn came one year and I had about 20 of them out across different sessions, it was proper good fishing.

Then also for just a couple of weeks of the year in summer, the weir will be full of small fish, mostly small Chublets but the one year when they were about, I was catching Dace and even Roach among them.
 

smiffy

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I was moaning about misinformation and a syndicate stretch of River Stour to a couple of lads the other day. One of them turns round and says he had a 16lb+ Barbel and a 14lb+ aswell from said stretch. Fundamentally I was right though, in that you can fish it for seasons and never catch a Barbel. He admitted he was a very lucky man.
He did say that some years the Barbel would move up to that section and other years they wouldn’t.
What has happened over the years is that the mill pools and floodgate runoff’s above them have become private, part of peoples gardens. This syndicate was on a pool and floodgate runoff. There is not enough available fishing to be able to tell what any remaining Barbel are doing. Or if there are any at all left.
 
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Zerkalo

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My mate had a 8lber out on opening day from around Kiddie, a decent fish for the river I think, could be wrong and there's bigger about but I don't hear about them. I would fish down there but it will take some exploration as it's all free stretches and although people will describe swims to you, working out where they are is a different matter.

Also chatting to my mate Burt the other day, he was telling me about the bridge in Kiddie Town Centre, says he watches the Chub there and reckons they all swim in formation, in groups of 3, and was going on about shirt button shotting and holding back to catch them one by one or something. :LOL: (y)
 

Lee Richards

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Agree with your posts to some extent Smiffy but animals will always predate on something that gives the most reward.

Use lots of energy taking sprat Roach where you need to make quite a few kills or take one large fish that cannot escape you (and especially on a low river)

It's akin to asking a Maccie D frequent visitor "what do you want - a chicken nugget or a Big Mac"
 

rudd

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I was moaning about misinformation and a syndicate stretch of River Stour to a couple of lads the other day. One of them turns round and says he had a 16lb+ Barbel and a 14lb+ aswell from said stretch. Fundamentally I was right though, in that you can fish it for seasons and never catch a Barbel. He admitted he was a very lucky man.
He did say that some years the Barbel would move up to that section and other years they wouldn’t.
What has happened over the years is that the mill pools and floodgate runoff’s above them have become private, part of peoples gardens. This syndicate was on a pool and floodgate runoff. There is not enough available fishing to be able to tell what any remaining Barbel are doing. Or if there are any at all left.
The Suffolk Stour. All the Barbel have been eaten by that shark 😀
 

Mr_Moo

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There's otters all over the Nene, but I've never seen one with a fish, never seen a dead fish and the most evidence I've seen are clusters of freshwater clams/mussels in the undergrowth.
 

Steve57

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To me it seems crazy reintroducing otters at the moment when their natural food, being eels, is in a massive decline.
 

Zerkalo

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I'm quite simple and see a dead Barbel and think one is enough. My brother in law on the other hand is one of those who thinks it's part of natures balance. There are apparently Mink at the park I fish too and they've been seen with Crucians.
 

smiffy

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Thing is, even if they aren’t eating the Crucians they’ll still get blamed for doing so🤷
Even if there’s no Otters on the lake they’ll still get blamed for eating the Crucians😂
Same with the Stour “The Otters have eaten all the Chub”. What? Same with the Chelmer and there’s as many fish on the Chelmer as I’ve ever known.
If we ever want to do something about Otter numbers we have to be credible but we’ve now reached the point where some anglers are looking at Otters as an excuse before looking at their own ability.
And I’m not talking about Barbel rivers, that’s slightly different. I’m talking locally.
 
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