Sunday, 12 February 2012

The Thames Smelt a bit Fishy!

A number of reports in scientific journals suggested that smelt gather in numbers in the tidal Thames at this time of year before migrating up river to spawn in freshwater.

The smelt is better known as that pike bait that smells of cucumber. Despite having used them on a number of occasions, I have only ever caught one pike on a smelt, albeit my personal best at twenty-four pounds.

Although we were still in the grip of cold weather I decided on an attempt on a Thames smelt as:

1. There was a spring tide with high tide at 4.11pm
2. There had been a report of a smelt caught at Erith Pier a couple of weeks earlier
3. I could not get back here for at least 3 weeks by which time my opportunity would be over.

To cut a long story short I failed to catch a smelt. Actually, no one on the pier caught a fish of any description! In fact no one fishing on the pier seemed to have heard of smelt being caught from the Thames.

Those scientific journals were begining to smell even fishier than a smelt!