May was to prove to be an odd month for me with a week away at the start plus some house work (painting) to do, I decided to concentrate on Patneys and to try different baits and feeding to see what effect each would have.
Visit one was just before I went away and I decided to fish the method to see if it would produce I picked a peg on the left bank and mid island and had a couple of hours on the feeder with micros and pellet , then tried capping the micros off with a bit of groundbait. The result was plenty of interest on a slow day (judging by others fishing) with more bites coming after I began skinning with the groundbait. After a couple of hours I went on the pole at 13m and had a couple there including the biggest of the day at 4lb. Total in 3.5 hours, 10 carp for about 14lb.
Returning from holiday my next visit to Patneys I again went on the left bank, this time further along to the end of the island, which has been peg 4 in matches. This time I decided to revert to my usual tactics of negative feeding with a toss pot but also fed wheat and just fished the pole at 13m. The result was 10 carp rotating meat, expander and wheat, 2 skimmers on expander and 1 rudd on corn. Plenty of missed bites on meat and wheat, I suspect they were rudd. Two carp lost and approx 15lb in total.
Visit 3 I decided to try the right hand side before the bay starts (peg 1 ) but left the pellets in the bag and decided to try worm. Half a large pot of finely chopped dendras was used to kick start the swim and after an initial couple of pasty carp I began to get pestered by small perch and rudd. I persevered for an hour or so with a couple of rudd, skimmers and two small tench before swopping to meat while still feeding worm, this resulted in a run of carp, nothing large, biggest about 2-3lbs. I ended up with 25 carp for about 18-20lb.
Visit 4 was at the end of the month and I had been pondering as to what to do – worm seemed to attract small fish as did corn, meat was as good as anything to produce bites but the size of the fish covered the full spectrum, wheat was an interesting change bait and did no harm in feeding it. Those of you who have read previous posts know that my son works in China and on his last visit I had asked him to bring me some Chinese paste. Now this is used on their commercials mainly for crucians/F1s/carassio but I fancied giving it a go!
The weather was not brilliant and it rained off and on the whole time I was there (3 hours fishing) but I was determined to try it out, so I set up in the bay, not in the hot spot (peg 3) but on the adjacent bank. Plumbing up I found that it sloped away sharply but found a flat area at 11m which gave me about 7 feet of water with the wind driving into my face after 10 minutes of starting!
Two rigs were set up a 0.75g BGT Paster to 0.14mm Shogun and a 16 hook and a home made abbreviated tip taking 0.2g for 11m to the left an 4 foot of water.
Mixing the paste was straight forward- I used about half a pack and mixed with an equal amount of water. I made sure I kneaded it well as I knew that it was a fibrous type and the kneading would activate it. I also had some Chinese banded mini sticks (vegetable pellet) to try. You can see one in the bait box below.
I ripped a small piece of paste off and tried to form a ball, on shipping out it immediately unraveled and hung from the hook like a leaf. Dropping it over the swim primed with a handful of micros and one ball of soft groundbait, I didn’t react as the float dipped then reappeared. Interesting I thought! Ripping another piece off, I this time hooked it like a maggot and doubled it on itself so it was hooked twice, if you see what I mean! Shipping out, it got to the bottom and after about 10 seconds the float buried and I lifted in to what felt like a good fish. Gently playing it back I got back to section 4 before it made another lunging run and the hook pulled!
I would love to say that it got better and better but the reality was that I was getting a bite a chuck on the paste, the problem being that the rudd decided it was their favorite food and if by chance I managed to get a piece down to the bottom I was getting skimmers, roach and small carp. The mini-stick received the same treatment as did meat when I tried that. I think that the larger carp were getting ready to spawn and the smaller fish were enjoying the chance to feed without being interrupted by their larger neighbours!
I will continue to try the paste and June will see me have the opportunity to fish a couple of matches at Patneys, Peatmoor, the Glebe and the 3rd round of the Summer League at Dodford Farm. We shall see!