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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Fantastic Pembroke Part 3 : Species bashing

The third day of my trip saw us targeting a variety of species. I am on a quest for 60 species this year from the UK shoreline so Ben had kindly set aside a day of my trip to concentrate on all things mini. We fished at a local mark to Ben who had informed me that the mark throws up trigger fish, a species I have never even thought about targeting. Armed with a few leftover rag, squid and fresh macky we started fishing just before low water. The rigs we were using were
 just half a set of size 12 sabikis, so in essence a 3-up baited flapper
rig with a 1.5oz bomb to get it firmly on the bottom. Bites came thick and fast for the first hour with Ben leading the way with a rock goby, myself catching the same shortly after. The new species started to appear though and before long I had my black goby (species 39 -top right). Ben had a really nice take on squid but the fish spat the hook before we could see what it was. Fishing a little closer to the wall though I kept getting tiny little rattles, eventually managing to hook one of the critters. Up from the depths came my first rod caught
butterfish (species 40) a cracking looking fish and it made me very
happy. Ben was still getting plenty of fish just off the wall managing a few small ballans and pollock before he managed a new one for his species tally this year, a gold-sinny wrasse. As if 2 new species wasn't enough I continued to pull out a vast amount of rock gobies before eventually getting a cracking take from this sand-smelt (species 41 - right) Another species ticked off the list. As the tide slackened the fish turned off with exception to the goby population down there, so we called it and headed off to another mark where Ben was confident I'd catch my first tub gurnard of 2012.



 After a short lunch break, we were on our new mark and ready to go. One up one down rigs were the plan with a 4oz rolling lead to keep it firmly pinned down. We both started with macky, myself opting to tip with squid to add a bit of movement to the bait. Ben had a bite almost instantly but the fish seemed to just hit it and leave it. Whilst he was holding his rod though, I got my first good knock and landed our target species, a tub gurnard (species 42). Re-baiting we continued to fish into an area that we were finding productive and Ben was soon into his 1st tub as well (up right) After the hectic start though the fishing went very quiet with one dab for me being the only other fish landed. We cut our losses and after another successful trip we headed home for some much needed food and rest. Yet again 3rd day running Pembroke didn't disappoint.

 On my 4th and final day we again targeted the smoothies after having some great fun a few days earlier. We spent a few hours collecting crab and then headed off to yet another different mark to try and get one of these doubles. To cut the story short, we managed another 2 smoothies each, no big ones unfortunately but I just love how much power they have in comparison to other fish of their size, just incredible. With the end of theis session came the end of my trip but I can definitely say I'll be back fairly soon, maybe to target some bream and that elusive trigger fish. The trip was a great success throughout with 18 species caught in total between us, myself landing 3 fish I've never caught before and smashing my Starry Smoothhound PB. Again a massive thanks to Ben for putting me on the fish every day, definitely a top lad and angler and I'm so jelous that he is surrounded by such a fantastic and diverse area of coastline. Back to North Wales it is now for a month or so though before I start on my adventures to Ireland, South Devon and Jersey.

Thanks for reading,
Tight Lines,
Ross