Barbel videos of late...

whitty

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I've watched two Avon Angling videos on the W.avon where the guy(who I enjoy watching)states the river is low and gin clear then goes on to fish a 2oz guru gripper feeder,which he calls small,which I considered was a fair size,he cast overhead and the splash was alarming,he never had a bite until just before dark on both trips,which were chub,then I watched a video by an angler fishing the Severn at Arley,now the river looked serate to me,yet he had an enormous feeder on both rods at least 3ozs,probably more,the splash was incredible,again he cast overhead about fifteen yards out,why in those conditions didn't they loose feed pellets(which they both had in their feed)with a catapult and fish with a maximum of 1.5ozs,as they would have definitely held with an ounce or so....it seems a feeder is paramount to success...
 

Aknib

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I honestly don't understand it, i've fished on my consistently low river four times so far this year and i've had around fifty Barbel in to double figures and some very nice Chub too.

My sophisticated tactics?

Running a float through with a piece of meat or a pellet below it and i've barely fed a morsel.

Can't get any simpler than that but I think many (certainly far from all) Barbel anglers get hung up on this static bait/standard approach thing and just never come to realise the polar opposite world to sitting it out for a few bites but when there are endless tackle and bait company clips showing you their leads/feeders/boilies/pellets etc. it's easy to understand why many go down the route they do.

Very rare if ever I lose a float but feeders are almost disposable items on some of the stretches I fish and the riverbed must be littered with them and...

They all need replacing.

Kerching!

I'm struggling to remember the last time I used a feeder for my Barbel fishing, it must literally be years ago and even the bait dropper has remained dry for longer than I can remember.
 

tigger

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Recently I was float fishing on the river and catching chub, dace etc but no matter how I ran my float and bait down the river, even held static there was not a sniff of a barbel. I removed the float, put a piece of line round my mainline and added several large split shot to the link. I squeezed a bb on the line as a stop for my link leger and to make my bottom as long or short as desired and bombs away. Within several minuites I felt the tell tale tap on my rod and struck into a barbel.....so as I had suspected the barbel were there all the time. This has happened many times, no idea why as there are very few anglers float fish this river for barbel. It seems to have been happening more and more over the last several years.
To be honest though, I rather like touch legering, as it's similar to float fishing due to the fact that your holding the rod and waiting intently for any sign of a vibration down the rod.
One thing anglers do when touch legering that I really don't get, is hold their line, supposedly feeling for bites? I've found that I feel a tap on the tip of the rod way before anything on the line near my hand.
If you think about it, that is the reason float fishing really is the most sensitive method, the float is pulled under way before the line back at the rod shows any sign of moving the tip if legering or even if touch legering.
Regarding leaving your rods in rests waiting for the tip to pull round, that has got to be one of the most un sensitive methods of angling. You could have countless fish suck in and spit out your bait with no sign of registration on your rod tip at all, until one of the unlucky or maybe dumber fish is hooked against the lead or rod tip as it turns with the bait in its mouth.
One favourite method of legering of mine is slack lining on still waters, just watch your line, as soon as it starts to move you know the fish has the bait in its mouth, I enjoy using that method for tench and carp.
 

whitty

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What I dont get is on one of the Avon Angling vids,he is on a two day trip to the Wye,he is fishing a sixty gram guru gripper feeder on a low river,casting mid-river,it lander with an enormous boodoosh and he never had a barbel till dark,on the far bank he had a line of overhanging bushesthat he himself said that the barbel must be hiding under,if he would have rigged up a decent float and waded a few yards out he could have trotted all along them feeding small amounts of pellet regularly,that,along with the lack of disturbance from a feeder or lead will slowly give the fish confidence,to use a two ounce feeder to fish ten yards out on the W.Avon in low conditions is propostrous....
 

ian g

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You see it all the time on the Severn , I always try to float fish or use a link ledger with a few swan shot on . I enjoy catching fish not sitting about waiting . The number of people who tell you you can't catch barbel in the day is mad . Ok on bright sunny days maybe but not most of the time.
 

Keith M

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I don’t use a feeder when I’m fishing for Barbel either, and I’m either trotting or I’m fishing with a few SSG shot on a link wrapped around my line and touch legering however unlike Ian I usually put my finger on my line and feel for the early signs of bites developing through my finger, but my baited hook is usually only around 20ft to 30ft from my finger at most, and I can clearly feel what is happening down by the hook.

Not to be recommended I know but when I used to fish the Kennet on an extremely slow night I would occasionally find myself starting to drift off, but the second I felt that unmistakeable pull on my finger I would automatically find myself lifting into the bite before I had even returned fully to life :)

I rarely use feeders however I do very occasionally use a small piece of PVA stocking full of pellets/hemp if I can’t feed reliably another way; or in the colder months when far less feed is required. But heavy leads and feeders are things I very rarely if ever need to use.

Keith
 
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tigger

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You see it all the time on the Severn , I always try to float fish or use a link ledger with a few swan shot on . I enjoy catching fish not sitting about waiting . The number of people who tell you you can't catch barbel in the day is mad . Ok on bright sunny days maybe but not most of the time.

Strange as it may sound i've had my the majority of best sessions in the heat of the midday sun. My claim to fame was 43 barbel varying on size from about 5lb to 10lb, plus lots of chub, dace and trput.

This was a couple of weeks back on a roasting day, the barbel wouldn't touch a trotted bait so I switched to a link leger....
 
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whitty

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I've no problem with feeders for barbel,they can be very effective,but in low water conditions,using what I consider to be very large feeders with loads of weight on them isn't a great tactic imo,in fact I can remember one year on the Severn when the only way to catch any amount of barbel was to cast one swan shot as far as you could and feed six small cubes of meat by catty into mid river,if the bait locked up on anything you lifted the rod tip to free it and off you went again,catches of up to sixty barbel were had every day,where if you static fishedbyou caught half a dozen if you were lucky...
 

markg

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I have never seen it myself but heard anglers talk about barbel coming up and attacking the feeder on the Avon, the thing being that the feeder didn't bother them, just the food inside. However, that cannot be always the case. I personally don't like feeders, they can work extremely well in the right circumstances but I prefer a lighter approach. I did some feeder fishing on the Avon at first because that was de rigor back then but I soon found I got as many fish and more on some days than the feeder lads using lighter methods, link ledgers or even total free lining with a lump bait. I never like the splash a heavy feeder makes even if it supposedly did not bother fish, it bothered me thinking it must do.
 

ian g

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Strange as it may sound i've had my the majority of best sessions in the heat of the midday sun. My claim to fame was 43 barbel varying on size from about 5lb to 10lb, plus lots of chub, dace and trput.

This was a couple of weeks back on a roasting day, the barbel wouldn't touch a trotted bait so I switched to a link leger....
That's what keeps thing interesting I suppose , not just going with convention . I suppose if you put a bait right in a front of them you are likely to get a bite.
 

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The feeder thing is odd....I saw people on a very low Wye recently still chucking 3 oz feeders about when you could have held with less than an ounce....
 

tigger

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That's what keeps thing interesting I suppose , not just going with convention . I suppose if you put a bait right in a front of them you are likely to get a bite.

Exactly, you just need to keep swapping and changing/tweaking you set up/method until you entice a response. Very often a change of spot will put you onto the fish also, rather than just sit and wait.
I suppose it depends on how much you actually want to catch a fish that will motivate you to work at it or simply relax, sit it out and chill out.
 

sam vimes

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I know that the majority on here will moan about modern carping. It's pretty much inevitable that the same folks will have a similarly dim view of modern barbelling. There's a reason why we've seen the steady test curve creep in both carp and barbel rods. Many witter on about no carp or barbel requiring the use of such heavy rods. In that respect they are correct, a 1.5lb TC rod will be adequate to land almost anything that swims in UK freshwaters. What they don't seem to understand is that heavy test curve rods have little to do with the size of the fish and everything to do with the size of the leads/feeders being chucked about.

I still don't really understand why anybody cares how other people choose to fish. For a time, I enjoyed the slightly less extreme end of this style of fishing. Largely for aesthetic/stylistic reasons, I haven't done either for five years or more. I'd simply rather fish a float and not be fixated on a single species. I've come to dislike how much even smaller leads spoil the feel of a fight. However, I still couldn't care less what others choose to do.
 

nottskev

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I'm not commenting because I care how others choose to fish. Put like that, it might seem illiberal or nosey. But it's an interesting talking point and a curious example of habit and tactical short-sightedness when a style solidifies as the norm. It's been the case for a good while now that a relative minority of float anglers were having the best of it on the stretches I fish while most carry on feedering. Steve/Aknib has had great catches floatfishing this season, and I've caught a few too, although Steve has had 44 more. Well, he's been 4 times, and I've only been twice lol. It can be surprising what you find when you go at it with a float. Barbel sometimes turn up literally under your rod top, even swims that look impossibly short can throw up multiple fish, barbel take a bait on the drop and nearly snatch the rod from your hand, you find you don't have to wait til the light is going to get a bite.....

I was once sat in the Severn on a hot summer day at Bridgnorth in a club match - the kind of fishing where you always seem to be on the wrong water for the conditions - and we were all feedering away, falling asleep, down the middle or far side. I was on the upstream end. A bloke came on the far bank above me. He took a few steps out into the low river, turned to face his own bank, and started running his float down the bushes on his bank, taking a string of good chub. He'd have won even if we'd put all our fish together, and it was food for thought.
 

Keith M

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I couldn’t care less what other anglers choose to do either Sam; however I still find it a bit strange when fashion seems to dictate using heavy leads and feeders etc. in places where they are not really necessary, and where they could be fishing more productively using just a few SSG on a small link leger or trotting a float down their swims and probably catch a lot more.
It’s probably the fact that they are just not thinking for themselves and just following the way everyone else around them is fishing.

It’s not that I care; I don’t; I just find it strange.

Keith
 
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whitty

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It doesn't matter to me how they fish,however it should matter to them,if you sit and think about why you didn't catch after a difficult session,surely fishing big feeders in low river conditions worth a little consideration.
as for barbel coming up to feeders i've posted on another thread about the time on the Severn when I started getting strange bites which slowly pulled the rod over(not the three foot launch),after missing several of these I got curious and left it longer and gently picked the rod up and applied gentle pressure,the fish reached the surface,a barbel,it's nose/mouth popped out vertically and it spat my block end feeder out(a few feet),this was on the old flimsy white capped feeders that were available back then(3/4 -1" diameter or so) ,this happened a few more timesso the next time I went I bought coke can feeders so they couldn't manage them,the feeders I'm talking about are like they use on the Trent,apparently they get a similar reaction there too in low water conditions...
 

whitty

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On the small stream Keith and I fish on the two trips there I reeled in a feeder of at least two ounces and at least two inches in diameter both days,on many occasions you could hold with a bb shot,the fish are often extremely spooky of lines and plops into the water....
 

nottskev

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It is a puzzle, the heavy feeder business. It has it's place, and if it suits you to fish that way, you can catch barbel in the right floodwater swims with 4 or 5 oz on the feeder under-armed to the right spot. But on a low clear river, you'd think it would make even the user wince. There may be no connection, but it does remind me how some modern developments in fishing have changed some people's ideas about stealth, disturbance etc. Friendly carp come and wave their tails right next to the bank you're sitting on, feed in the ripples of the last fish caught, home in as food signals on various kinds of splashing and tapping on the surface, get caught on feeders cast into water that barely covers them, get suckered and mugged by anglers waving poles over the heads and plopping a bait in front of them etc. Some of our older ideas about being unobtrusive and avoiding disturbance have been turned upside down in commercial practices.
 

whitty

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The amount of times i've fished for barbel relatively close in,lowering leads in,in fact often using a pole cup to stop disturbance,however on rivers like the Wye,Severn and Trent this isn't possible,so different ruses have be tried surely???
 

sam vimes

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The reality has got to be that some folks must like sitting behind heavy rods, on buzzers using heavy tactics. They appear not to care that alternative methods and styles might be more productive, maybe they don't even realize. Why that might be, I don't know for sure and I don't really care, whatever floats their boat. Perhaps they enjoy sitting in fresh air by a river not doing much at times. After all, there are plenty of folks on here that rattle on about fishing being about more than catching fish and just being there being enough. I question the veracity of those claims when they come from people that complain about others not catching as much as they might.

I dare say that some of them will also wonder why anyone would choose to "relax" all day long using a busy method like trotting which will generally involve standing up all day. Quite a few non-match types will also lump pellet waggler (done properly) and long pole as methods that are too busy to be relaxing. Let's be honest there are plenty on here that will have nothing to do with poles despite them demonstrably being the most effective tool at times. All I'm fairly sure of is that those that might actually be able to answer about heavy gear and feeders/leads are a bit thin on the ground on here. They are not really part of the demographic of regular posters. It would be a rather similar story if you asked about using/buying a long pole or a carp rod. There are better places to get an answer. I'm not convinced that most on here actually want answers though.
 
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