Missed bites.

Andydj

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Last night on the Avon I had two bites that I completely missed.
I was upstreaming. This is not a method I have used a lot and I am trying to get to grips with it.
Anyway, I was using a quiver tip nicely curved in a deep steady swim.
The lead was light but balanced to the flow and holding nicely.
One minute the tip was curved, the next I had slack everywhere. This happened twice about 30 mins apart. Once I had a hooklink about 2 1/2 foot the other, about 14 inches.
I suspect there was a Barbel about. I saw one roll below me and I have seen them in the area in the past.
My thoughts are:
1. A Barbel picking up the bait lightly then bolting downstream blowing out the bait which was only held lightly in its lips as it went. I have seen them do this before when they are pressured.
2. Line bites.
I have used the method a bit this season with some success, particularly with Chub and I haven't come across this before.
Any ideas or thoughts please?
 

Philip

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I would be very surproised if it was example 1 espcially as you mention the lead was well balanced.

Why would a Barbel bolt down stream to an upstream fished bait ? ...its not bolting agaisnt anything which is basically the whole point of upstreaming to remove the resistance in the setup.

Obviously without being there its a total wild guess but I would say either line bites, small fish tugging at it or debris hitting the line and disloging the lead.
 

Andydj

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I would be very surproised if it was example 1 espcially as you mention the lead was well balanced.

Why would a Barbel bolt down stream to an upstream fished bait ? ...its not bolting agaisnt anything which is basically the whole point of upstreaming to remove the resistance in the setup.

Obviously without being there its a total wild guess but I would say either line bites, small fish tugging at it or debris hitting the line and disloging the lead.
Hi. They do naturally do that in an environment where they are used to being fished. They don't need a lead to create a bolt effect.
I am tending to agree, line bites.
Wasn't debris, no way.
Thanks for your interest.
 

Keith M

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Were you using a hair rigged bait? If so try shortening the hair so that your bait is lying virtually alongside your hook; or remove the hair completely. Chub have a habit of moving off with the bait in their lips, and if you’ve also seen Barbel doing this in the past it could also be an explanation. Although in my experience it would be much more likely to have been a Chub.

Or Could your bait have been masking the hookpoint?

Or could it have been some weed or something else washing into your line? If your lead was well balanced it wouldn’t be at all hard to dislodge it.

There’s quite a few things that could have caused it; did your tip straighten or bend round?

Keith
 
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Andydj

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Were you using a hair rigged bait? If so try shortening the hair so that your bait is lying virtually alongside your hook; or remove the hair completely. Chub have a habit of moving off with the bait in their lips, and if you’ve also seen Barbel doing this in the past it might explain this. Although in my experience it would be much more likely to have been a Chub.

Or Could your bait have been masking the hookpoint?

Or could it have been some weed or something else washing into your line? If your lead was well balanced it wouldn’t be at all hard to dislodge it.

Keith
Hi. Yes, short hair extension of fluro hooklength.
Definitely not debris. Wondering now if the line bellying downstream was near the hooklength causing a line bite? Either that or maybe it was Barbel picking it up then dropping it. Most un Chub like. They are usually far more restrained when they pick up and drop your bait I think.
Maybe a heavier lead would give a better idea what was happening but then you've lost the sensitivity in the rig. Probably not so important with Barbel though.
 

Keith M

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Hi. Yes, short hair extension of fluro hooklength.
Definitely not debris. Wondering now if the line bellying downstream was near the hooklength causing a line bite? Either that or maybe it was Barbel picking it up then dropping it. Most un Chub like. They are usually far more restrained when they pick up and drop your bait I think.
Maybe a heavier lead would give a better idea what was happening but then you've lost the sensitivity in the rig. Probably not so important with Barbel though.
I fish a stream that is crystal clear at times, that a couple of others on here also fish; and I remember fishing for Barbel there one day when somebody started trotting in the swim above me. He was trotting a float and using chunks of luncheonmeat on his hook. I knew this because occasionally after he had started to reel in at the end of his trot his bait would come off and sink onto the gravel directly in front of me and it was often followed down by several Chub. and the first Chub would grab it in its lips and shoot off to the other side of the stream well away from the others with the meat held clearly in its lips before attempting to swallow the meat; just like a sparrow will often pick bread up from a lawn and fly up onto a branch or a fence before trying to eat it away from the other birds.

This is why I know that Chub often do this.

Keith
 
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Andydj

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Interesting. So could be Chub or Barbel up to this and maybe not line bites. I will hopefully be able to get a better idea when we get a nice bright day and clear water (if that ever happens this summer!).
Thanks for this Keith.
 

S-Kippy

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Surely what you've described is precisely what your looking for when upstreaming with a balanced lead ? Fish picks up bait,lead dislodges,fish feels no resistance and line falls slack as fish drops back downstream with its prize. I'm not saying that's what happened but its what I'd expect if I was upstreaming. You need to reel like crazy to pick up the slack and set the hook.
 

Andydj

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Surely what you've described is precisely what your looking for when upstreaming with a balanced lead ? Fish picks up bait,lead dislodges,fish feels no resistance and line falls slack as fish drops back downstream with its prize. I'm not saying that's what happened but its what I'd expect if I was upstreaming. You need to reel like crazy to pick up the slack and set the hook.
 

Andydj

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Mmm. This was not just a case of dropping back. Must have been motoring.
I take your point though. Another thing, I was using a centre pin which doesn't have a quick retrieve. Some learning points here.
Like I said, I have had some success with the method but this was new to me but interesting all the same.
 

S-Kippy

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Sometimes there is an awful lot of slack to pick up. Its not unusual for the fish to be downstream of you by the time you pick all the slack up and connect....its happened to me many times. A typical "downstream" barbel bite can be very savage caused by Captain Whiskers picking the bait up and dropping downstream quickly. The same bite/reaction when upstream legering could easily produce what you described.

If these are proper pick ups then I dont think a pin is always going to be quick enough to pick the slack line up.....but I often use pins when I shouldn't simply because I like using them.
 
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tigger

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Gotta say, i've never had a problem using a pin if upstream legering. That's on large and small rivers.

Those missed botes sound like what people have already said, either chub, liners or debris. Doubtful it would be barbel as even with a bow in your line you should be able to strike that out and connect with them easy enough. Even with a little slack after the fish is hooked it would be unlikely for the hook to drop out so easy, especially if using micro barbed hooks.
Also, the line might feel slack, but the water pressure will still be keeping the line taught at the fish.
 

Andydj

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Gotta say, i've never had a problem using a pin if upstream legering. That's on large and small rivers.

Those missed botes sound like what people have already said, either chub, liners or debris. Doubtful it would be barbel as even with a bow in your line you should be able to strike that out and connect with them easy enough. Even with a little slack after the fish is hooked it would be unlikely for the hook to drop out so easy, especially if using micro barbed hooks.
Also, the line might feel slack, but the water pressure will still be keeping the line taught at the fish.
That's a good point. My bet is liners.
 

chevin4

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As others have alluded I suspect chub or line bites. I started off yesterday touch legering i would but a good take which I kept missing until I eventually landed a chublet of around 8oz. I was trying mussels and the bait would come back shredded after an unmissable bite. I did catch a small barbel on the mussel and like most of the barbel bites I get the tip slammed round. To illiminate line bites you could try a small back lead or lower the rod in the rest so the rod tip to the bait is at a less acute angle.
 

whitty

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As most Avon barbel are decent fish(8lbs plus)I would be surprised if they are doing you over,as this is the domain of 2-4lb barbel,sadly,after reading your posts stating you want to actually strike at bites im afraid the only way to hook such bites from barbel would be to up the lead size,put a silicon float stop say 18" above the lead and self hook them,even if you just tried it in that swim to identify the culprits...
 
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