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  • Writer's pictureRobin Howard

Brighton Inshore Fishing - Catch report 25th May 2024

First sailing and it was my pleasure to welcome aboard Max, Amando and Danny. Danny was also returning for the final sailing. Out on calm seas, and off to where recent events have been occurring. However... Change continues under the sea. The clouds of brit are being decimated by birds from above, fish from below. And as the brit shoals diminish in size, the rot also continues to decrease. This means other food sources become available, specifically crabs.

We took our lot with the brit shoals for first sailing, but all the usual half hearted takes and fish dropping off thing was in full flow. With over 10k bass passing under the boat (rough estimate... ;) ) we managed to land... Just five, with two for the table. Plus bream.

Amazing how it fluctuates, but confident it was down to having pretty much all limp tide for the session, I was upbeat about sailing two, where Tim, John, Garry and Lee were the victims. Sadly, my optimism was not warranted. Well, it depends on where you set the levels of your standards I suppose. Just three fish landed. What was interesting, was the sizes and where they were caught. Having found zero brit on the brit spot, which was a shock as it is the first time in recent weeks where there have not been any, I put us onto a little knobbly spot while I perused what to do.

Tim's rod smashed over, and showed all the signs of a very good fish. Tim displayed excellent patience, and played the fish perfectly. On surfacing, the fish was clearly lightly hooked, which was no surprise. All of us watching had twitchy bums so I have no idea how Tim felt. Happily, the skipper nailed the netting first time, and a bass approaching 7lb was in the net, and Tim developed a smile that did not fade.

I then proceeded to get into my panicked chicken routine. This involves me smashing BIF1 at 25 knots to every mark I ever fished , all to no avail. With just thirty minutes left to run, I decided to have my first try at one of my favourite crab spots. Two fifty plus fish were landed, one to Tim and one to Lee. A grueller, but with eventually good results. And immense implications.

As I met different Lee, Danny, Michael and Dex for the thirds sailing, I noticed a text from a friend anchored near the brit spot. Birds working... I was fully intending to establish the crab situation but I could not ignore that. Besides, we have a week of wind to look forward to, and I can work the crab situation out shorebound with shore clients. Off we went.

To a sea of fish that were opening their mouths. Quality fish. Max kill quickly. Dex and Danny went onto the bream half way through for perhaps fifteen between them. Even so the final tally was 27 bass, and four big smiles.

Now a public information broadcast. To those boaters I snapped at today, I apologise. Please understand my days are long, and my patience is that of a soon to be fifty six year old man. I completely understand you expect us on BIF1 to be jerking our rods up and down with lures beneath us. But the BIF1 concept is shore luring afloat. If we decide to surface fish metals (don't even laugh until you come do it with me) those metals may well be reaching 100 meters. At bullet speed. It isn't what it might do to your inflatable that worries me, but the very real danger of being garroted by the ultra fine but incredibly strong lines we use. It's a big sea.

Not big enough for my final rant though. This lovely OLD boat came into my drift at speed. Eight souls on board. its not big enough to hold eight life jackets. To the skipper, a few things. Fish are wild animals. If you move into fish at top speed and then throw on the handbrake in a smokey old tub like yours, the fish flatten to the ground and depart. I can tell you that because I watched them doing it. Additionally, skipper, you are legally responsible for the lives of all the people on your vessel. Regardless of if they are paying or not. WHEN the accident comes, as it is clear it will be coming, you will be very grey before you have the freedom to fish again. Laugh at these words, at your peril.

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