Something new for me this winter - Pellet Feeder

Zerkalo

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I have mentioned before that the fishery just down the road from me, Bells Mill, has banned groundbait. This used to be, rightly or wrongly, how I'd fish it winter. I like legering in winter and I used to fish a small cage feeder with a few micro pellets and maggots sandwiched between a dark groundbait with maggot on the hook.

This would pick me up upwards of 30 fish on a good day in the frosty depths of winter, 15 on a so so day. But I have been happy with that, finding that it often out fishes a waggler or pole. We're talking small Carp, Skimmers, and the odd Roach.

Now they have banned groundbait, and I still want to fish, I think I am going to have to learn to fish a pellet feeder.

Can you use fishery micros in a pellet feeder? As they only sell micros and 4mm+ pellets.

Any other tips? I'm thinking about buying some of the smallest pellet feeders going.

I am actually quite looking forward to it, even though there's a few months to go yet, wrapping up like the Michelin Man during November to February. These are some of my favourite months for fishing compared to Spring. Hopefully I will have a new pole by the end of winter though as I'm getting my finances back in order, so I might enjoy my Spring fishing a bit more than usual next year.
 

alsur

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Just soak micros as you would for method and use them as you would groundbait in normal feeder
 

Zerkalo

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Just soak micros as you would for method and use them as you would groundbait in normal feeder
Cheers mate. Does not seem too difficult from what I can tell. Will still be a new adventure for me, and I might as well as it's 5 minutes drive from me, takes longer to get down the track to the fishery than it does to get there. I'm usually one of the only ones mad enough to fish there when it's freezing but this will be my method. A new one for me.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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Pellet feeder is my favourite Winter legering method.

You do need to be careful of fishery pellets, are they Skrettings or Coppens. Skrettings are perfect, Coppens tend to set solid when soaked. I prepare my Skrettings by adding just enough water to "wet the feet of the top layer of pellets". Then leave for an hour. Best done before leaving home. Perfect by the time you want them.

Couple of videos that may be of interest.




View attachment Pellet Feeder Loading.mp4

View attachment Pellet Feeder Emptying 1b.mp4

I use the larger pellet feeder in Winter but will drop to the smaller if bites are hard to come by. Always have a selection of baits though dead reds in Winter are my go-to.
 

Zerkalo

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Thanks for the help again Neil. I think it was around this time last year I was asking similar questions but in the end just did not fish Bells Mill due to Covid having to book on and the groundbait ban. It seems simple enough but it's probably my excitement at trying something different getting the better of me. I don't know if they're skrettings or coppens as it's been so long since I've been, but I do worry about them going solid in the feeder.
 

alsur

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I actually prefer coppers to skrettings find they don't stick as much, I think a lot is down to preparation I just soak mine for 30 seconds to a minute drain and leave for a while. Batches do vary and you have to adjust soak accordingly, as you are stuck with fishery pellets you will have to experiment but I'm sure you will be able to get them to work.
 

Corn Master

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To be fair I wouldn't really use groundbait in winter, I'd really go either bomb or micros. Plus a pellet feeder in winter is too restricted. By this I mean by a short stiff hooklength that's needed when fishing pellet feeder but overlooked by a lot of anglers and of course you are only giving the fish an option by eating your micros and not your hookbait. This is due to the way it pushes your pellets out depending on the shape Try a hybrid instead, much more fool proof
 

Zerkalo

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It's all completely new to me, any type of method feeder. So maybe I'll try a hybrid feeder.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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Strangely I have had far more fish on a pellet feeder than a hybrid. I suppose its a confidence thing.

I don't see my 4 inch 0.17 Reflow hooklength as too stiff.

If you look at my second video you will see the bait sits on top of the feed. And, unlike The Method, you can actually induce a bite on the Pellet feeder by twitching it back towards you.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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It's all completely new to me, any type of method feeder. So maybe I'll try a hybrid feeder.
You really need to carry and try all types. There are days when, inexplicably, fish can display a preference for the type of feeder and how the bait is therefore presented. Same with hookbaits.
 

Zerkalo

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I'm hoping they will take maggots on the hook, but am prepared to switch it and type of feeder around.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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Thanks for the help again Neil. I think it was around this time last year I was asking similar questions but in the end just did not fish Bells Mill due to Covid having to book on and the groundbait ban. It seems simple enough but it's probably my excitement at trying something different getting the better of me. I don't know if they're skrettings or coppens as it's been so long since I've been, but I do worry about them going solid in the feeder.
Easiest thing to do is experiment as per my videos and watch what happens in a tray of water. My second video should give you confidence as to how the bait sits on the pellets once ejected. In Winter I will wait three minutes then tighten up to the pellet feeder and move or twitch it 9-12 inches towards me. This can induce a bite, though it may still be a few minutes until that bite comes.

Have a read of my Beginner's Guide to Commercial Feeder Fishin on my blog.

 

Neil ofthe nene

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It should go without saying that what I write comes from experience, not theory. My experience may be differernt to others but I write about methods that have been successful for me. Whether they would be so for others I have no idea. But there are many ways to skin a cat, no one way is the absolute right way.
 

alsur

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The advantage of normal feeder with damped micros is you can use it pretty much the same a groundbait and use it to plug ends, hybrids are effective at delivering small amounts of feed which can make all the difference on hard days.
 

Zerkalo

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Thanks for all tips. If I could buy my own pellets I could experiment before I go in a tub of water, but you have to book on and bait is delivered to your peg. So the first time I go I want to get it right. I love these hard days in the middle of winter, I'm fishing when a lot of people don't bother, and with my old approach I could catch 30lb of fish which is not bad compared to what others around me catch. The matches they hold there over winter, I've noticed they hold some Silvers Matches, but I fish there with maggot and still catch small 1-2lb Carp and F1s so beats me how they do it.
 

dave brittain 1

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Pellet feeders tend to work best when fished against a far bank shelf on canal and strip type lakes or those with islands where you can fish reasonably tight.

In winter I opt for the smallest Guru and fish either 6mm pellet, corn or triple maggot on the hook. If it's really hard don't rule out a small drennan link or Preston feeder with a 12 in hook length and double or triple maggot on the hook. It will pick up fish when other baits struggle.

Nothing complicated in preparation. Soak standard 2.3mm Sketterings for 1.5- 2 minutes when you get there. 1/2 hrs later they will be ready unless they freeze together.
 

MunchMyStump

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Having just come to the party with method fishing I can honestly say the Preston ICS system is the best out there. Fully interchangeable on the fly should conditions change. Chucking a 60g method one minute to a 15g feeder the next takes seconds to do. They ain't cheap though and the moulds are like rocking horse poo. Best method is the 20g meduim. Lots of Tube vids out there on how to use them and they work very very well! Even I catch fish!
 

robert d

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I have mentioned before that the fishery just down the road from me, Bells Mill, has banned groundbait. This used to be, rightly or wrongly, how I'd fish it winter. I like legering in winter and I used to fish a small cage feeder with a few micro pellets and maggots sandwiched between a dark groundbait with maggot on the hook.

This would pick me up upwards of 30 fish on a good day in the frosty depths of winter, 15 on a so so day. But I have been happy with that, finding that it often out fishes a waggler or pole. We're talking small Carp, Skimmers, and the odd Roach.

Now they have banned groundbait, and I still want to fish, I think I am going to have to learn to fish a pellet feeder.

Can you use fishery micros in a pellet feeder? As they only sell micros and 4mm+ pellets.

Any other tips? I'm thinking about buying some of the smallest pellet feeders going.

I am actually quite looking forward to it, even though there's a few months to go yet, wrapping up like the Michelin Man during November to February. These are some of my favourite months for fishing compared to Spring. Hopefully I will have a new pole by the end of winter though as I'm getting my finances back in order, so I might enjoy my Spring fishing a bit more than usual next year.
I like to put dryer pellets inside and cap them off with normal prepared pellets if i cant use groundbait. I only soak them for 10 to 20 seconds for inside and upto a minute and a half for the capping off pellets ,thats using micros 2mm . For 4mm inside i soak for about 30 seconds and cap off with wetter micros .
 

rd115

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When i used to fish stillwaters i found for the pellet feeder preparing the micros the day before was best and leave in fridge overnight, made them go spongey all the way through rather than sticky on the outside.
 
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