Where are the Cod? The Sprats are in, has this affected the fishing?

Sean McSeveny
  · Sean McSeveny  · November 13, 2013

I may know why the Cod have become difficult to catch! It seems that the Sprats have moved in to the area. I have been talking with a few commercial Bass fisherman and some charter skippers, and they tell me that the Bass have been coughing up loads of Sprats. I have known in the past that when the Sprats show up, the lure fishing for Bass becomes fantastic, but the Cod fishing dies off. It seems as though the Cod come off the bottom to chase and gorge themselves on the Sprats.

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So far I have never used Sprats as bait except for Pike fishing, so I can’t claim that they are a wonder bait. There seems to be quite a bit of debate as to whether they are any good as a Cod bait or not, and how to rig then, so I guess that might be one of my articles in the next couple of weeks.

Talking of Bass from the boats, Paul Whittall took Offshore Rebel out in a recent break in the weather and had almost the whole sea to himself. It was a bit lumpy, but the Bass didn’t seem to mind, as he landed a string of fish on consecutive drifts. Plenty of them were in the 7lb range.

I am pretty excited this morning, as I am guiding today on lures for the first time in weeks. The water has cleared enough to give us a good chance at targeting some late Bass and the ever present Pollock.

I would like to say thanks to everyone that gave me feedback on the first fishing forecast video I posted. You raised some good points and I will aim to implement them in the next video. I am not sure if I have the time to get one out this week as I am away at the weekend fishing for Pike around Cambridge.

I mentioned the other day that I had  some interesting projects lined up. Not only will I try to do a once a week video forecast, I am going to start using the latest in social media to bring you a regular interactive live broadcast. Don’t get too excited, as I have not got myself my own broadcast studio. Instead I am going to take advantage of some of the features that Google + Hangouts has to offer.  It will allow me to put out a live video stream podcast, and have guests that will be able to answer questions live on their own webcams from an invited list of viewers. As a viewer you can type in questions and hopefully have them answered. I hope to start the first one later next week. All you need to do to view or take part in the live streaming events is create a Google account if you don’t already have one. Once you have done that go to your Google+ page type in my name, Sean McSeveney and add me to one of your circles. I will then reciprocate and add you into one of mine. You will then be sent a message with an invite to any live sessions that I do. Hopefully Adrian will make it simpler for you, by creating a button on here that will link directly to my account. If you miss the live streaming event, you will be able to catch up later with the recording on Youtube.

As I am running out of time, I will quickly mention the next change, and that is tackle reviews. I have noticed that although there are some good tackle reviews out there, they mainly concentrate on well known names. What I want to do is not only bring you reviews from the big companies, but also some of the lesser known but potentially better manufacturers. I will give you more details tomorrow, of how the reviews will take place. What I need is a number of anglers that are willing to help with the reviews. If you are interested in testing tackle, then please contact me for more information. You will need to be able to write a report about the product, but the perks are quite good.

Sea Conditions: 

Water temperature 13.3*c.

Chesil Beach:  Calm with a small swell. The water has a bit of colour in it, but it has cleared a lot over the past two days.

Portland: 1m swell with  slightly coloured water.

Portland Harbour: Calm with mostly clear water

Weymouth Bay:  Calm with clear water

Chesil Beach forecast: Calm conditions with improved water clarity means that we could be in for a few days of good fishing. Especially if the Bream and Plaice are still around. I know that there are still Smoothound on the beach. There is also a good chance of a Pollock, especially around Ferrybridge.

With calm conditions tonight, there is a good chance that you will see some Whiting and Sole from West Bexington and Cogden. If the Sprats come in close to the beach, they will be followed by shoals of Mackerel and Bass.

 Portland: I am looking forward to hitting a number of marks around Portland today with my lure rod. Wrasse, Bass and Pollock are all on my list of target species. Larger hard plastic lures for the Bass and soft plastics for the Wrasse and Pollock. It is likely that the fishing will be good for a bit longer, so I will be making the most of it. 

Church Ope Cove and the Bill will produce plenty of Wrasse to bait, with Conger and Bull Huss a good possibility after dark.

Portland Harbour: The harbour has fished consistently over the past couple of weeks.  A few decent Bass have been landed and I have spotted a lot of Garfish that are still around.

Weymouth Bay: I had a quick walk around Weymouth Harbour yesterday, and I was glad to see that there are still Mullet in the harbour. They seem to be Thick Lipped, so bread will be the best bait. The Stone Pier is still producing lots of smaller species, but I have heard that there are some nice size Flounder moving into the harbour.

Preston Beach still has lots of small Bass and Flounder all along it. One or two Sole have been caught there last week, along with Smoothound and Rays.

Guiding & Lessons: Even though the Bass fishing should run all the way through to mid December and maybe even later, depending on the water temperature, I will be mainly switching to guiding for winter species. Most of my trips will be Wrasse fishing for the large fish from rough ground, , or from the beaches for Cod and Whiting.   Have a look on the guiding link at the top of the page or drop me an email for more details to [email protected]

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