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  • Robin Howard (a.k.a. Fishyrob)

Brighton Inshore Fishing - Catch report 18th December 2017

The angel, Amanda...

The day started in a very uplifting way. I was doing the bit of the job I really do not like. Lunking 38 litres of fuel on a sticky trolly down to BIF1, in the pitch black, having just woken up. Its one of those jobs that remind me, despite my potentially physical lifestyle, I am incredibly unfit. Probably the journey that one day will take me to see my late Father on an estuary, where also sits the rainbow bridge, so I might never be without my forever friends. I really was having these thoughts, when I bumped into an angel. Because thats perhaps the only way I can describe somebody who gets up and makes sure the swans in the marina have at least some freshwater that day, before getting into their own likely busy worlds. I couldnt help but say hello, and ask the question. Why? Turns out, angel Amanda has known the male since he was a fluffy cygnet. Then a dog attack scared him off, and took the life of his brother. His brothers body was found dumped behind the Wetherspoons pub. I queried this, as even a shamed dog owner surely would not dump the body, and I immediately suspected a very hungry fox. However, the wildlife experts suggested a fox would have left different wounds, and a large dog likely responsible. Then, this year, not only did this beautiful boy returned to the marina, but he bought his wife. And then proceeded to bully his mother out of the marina... Is that a happy ending? Im not sure. But I am very happy we have angels such as Amanda keeping an eye on some of my most favorite marina tenants.

Ryan showing there are still some bass about

On to the fishing. We got out a little late, due to all of todays anglers, Frequent flyer Neil, and new to BIF1 but not to Fishyrob, Darren who I had the pleasure to guide on lures from the shore a few years back, and his lad Ryan, who I have to say, is spot on with the banter, all held up by a particularly slow M23.

It was always going to be a fun day. But would it be a fishy day? Having not sailed for a couple of weeks, I really didnt know. I know the bass have left even the Kingsmere spots where they rallied for a few weeks before continuing on their way to winter grounds further to the south west. In addition, visibility was not great. I was nervous...

Still some squid around...

Initially, I felt relieved. First drift, and a few knocks, with some fat pouting and a few whiting coming to the boat. Not ideal, but action, and any fish on 35gm outfits is fun. But when I finally got a good drift on the spot (the initially brisk Northerly wind and quickly reducing tidal flow made it very tough) there were not the normal masses of marks I have been used to. And with little action, it needed a re-think. I headed to a rock mark closer inshore, but stopped half a mile off, as the colour was very much more focused, due to recent rainfalls and the Adur spilling its guts. And with it, cold water. The temperature was flashing below 9 degrees.

I tried some deeper marks, and saw some good marks on the sounder, but still the rods refused to bend. I needed to come up with something. I headed to some sand, right on our limits from a certification point of view. "Gurnards and whiting" I suggested. Neptune, clearly listening somewhere around (I think he has bugged my mobile) for once agreed, and switched those two species on nicely. Also, I guess to say happy christmas to me, he threw the bass switch for a very short while, with four unexpected smalls appearing. It was starting to feel like fishing again.

Sadly though, daylight is short, although before we finally headed into the marina, we added squid to the gastronomic delight assembling in the live bait wells. It quite mirrored the shore trip Darren had with me. Much rushing around for not a lot at all, salvaged at the last venue. Today, it was salvaged for me also, I simply hate poor results. The end count, .. 4 bass, perhaps 20 gurnards with some better fish among them, a few chunky pouting and whiting, And that squid. All on tackle that is also quite suitable for perch in rivers, and that actually makes for a great fun day. So, with smiles all round, Neptune threw his finale piece into the mix. A young adult dolphin, spotted by Neil, and seen by us all. I like the days Neptune wants to be friendly.

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