My main session this week was a short afternoon trip to the local canal in pursuit of ruffe. Yes, you read that correctly. As anglers we catch them from time to time – they’re certainly not numerous – but I actually target them. The first – and most important – box to tick is location. Regardless of the species, you can only catch what’s in front of you.
In recent years, while after other fish I’ve caught more than average numbers (which usually means two) of ruffe per session in certain spots on the canal. Deducing that it means I’ve located a potential hotspot, I then went back and targeted them specifically. Of course, you can’t exclude other species but if they’re there you will catch them.
Wanting to bank the biggest ruffe possible I have fished for them with a size 10 hook and a worm. They give a very distinctive bite as the tip trembles methodically and I strike at the right moment to avoid a deep-hooked fish – a bit like dead-baiting for pike in that respect. You work out what’s going on beneath the surface and respond accordingly.
Also, like the aforementioned esox, It’s best to pull out of a fish rather than have to be poking around with a disgorger. As you can see from one of the photographs, I caught the fish hooked cleanly in the corner of the mouth. That’s a textbook ending. Like pike they may look ferocious but once you enter their mouth and beyond, like all fish, they are delicate.
Fishing with a small lead (1/3 ounce) and a 2.5lb fluorocarbon hooklength (in case I hooked a nice perch), it was a very simple set-up. My hook of choice for this type of fishing, which I’ve used for years, is a Drennan Super Specialist. I fed loose red maggots over the worm and caught just ruffe on this occasion, which is amazing really.
I did seven other sessions during the week, all jigging for perch on a variety of venues from canals to pools. A 2g jig head and a small rubber fish means I catch perch of all sizes, which is what I want. I’m often out for just a few minutes, making the most of the opportunity and what I want to do above everything else is regardless of size, just catch fish.
My week on Twitter – A selected daily tweet