The plan is to create a day ticket lake where the angler can fish with good camaraderie. Many anglers who fish here have said how nice it is to fish with none of the nonsense rules of the local club lakes. We do have rules but any sensible angler will work with them. We try to bailiff the lakes by helping people rather than looking for fault and have had no problems in doing so. It’s only fishing, we’re supposed to enjoy it and I hope we can carry it on just as it is now.
Trees have been planted and transplanted around the site most of them due to the poor growing soil. I’m always looking to strategically plant up a few more species here this coming winter, so the lake will mature fully.
The fish on the day ticket lake?
We started by growing and stocking a few fish from our fish farm, with the 10 strains we currently hold at the time of writing and always growing, we will always look to keep experimenting with the best growing strain for the blue waters of St Andrews. We will grow fish onsite in the stock ponds every year utilising the fantastic quality of the water to push these stockies to their best possible capabilities with a good daily feeding programme and aim to do a trickle stocking every year just to mix up the gene pool in the lake. We will be feeding the current stock within the lake to further promote the growth of the original fish, removing with anglers help progressively, fish under 5lb ultimately, in the 1 st year (2019), rising to 8lb in 2020, 12lb in 2021 and by 2022 removing all fish under 15lb, meaning all stocking in the future from Winter 2019 from the stock ponds will be 12lb+.
Fish that will grow up and over 15lb quickly with the feeding programme, we will be implementing on the lake throughout this period. The idea is to grow all fish on the site, taking the non-growers out in the future. I have a strong suspicion that we will have many new home bred blue lagoon babies every year and will take these out by angling and putting in stock ponds, so not to be
annoying to visiting anglers and will be grown on for the future.
Most visiting anglers will appreciate our ethos of protecting the future fish stocks and we use the stock pond to grow Blue Lagoon babies on and to quarantine any fish that come up not looking well on the lake. We’ve revamped the stock ponds. We will build up the stock pond during 2019 with 5lb and below babies from the lake and a few of my own fish farm strains, these will be grown on a “bit
and then trickle”, emptied when they have reached the correct stocking size, distributing the fish into the lake. This is an ongoing lakes management project, to keep the big fish stocks healthy on the lake. We feed the stock pond hard, knowing how many fish are in there and although we do appreciate anglers giving them any leftover bait we would prefer left over bait went into the main lakes please. The stock ponds are small, and will be getting full of fish as they grow into their space so we need to carefully monitor how much food goes in there, if anglers throw several kilo’s in per week I can’t be sure if we’re feeding too much for the fishes health and water conditions.
We will be growing the fish on to provide future leviathans for the lake which will be no risk to the current stock health wise, all fish will go back into the lake so please treat the smaller fish with respect for the future. When we get to 2022 we will remove anything under 15lb to stock the pond.
I will be stocking, Tench, Perch and Pike in the future. We hope that the Tench will bring families with kids to learn about float fishing and fishing for bites. We hope they achieve maximum growth with the feed programme ready for some float fishing action on those summers dawn and dusk sessions. There are residual amounts of Tench that have been reported. Perch and Pike are going to be our robust predators to control the self-spawning of the Carp and provide some much needed lure and action through the colder months in the super clear water that will be exhilarating. Both the Pike and Perch are fragile fish, waters that produce specimen catches and then are overfished by anglers killing the bigger ones through fishing wrongly for them. There might be natural ups and downs for predator populations but I know that good predator management can produce long lasting populations so there is a strict rule on this. If you want to fish seriously for the Perch/Pike on the lake in the winter months (November to March) you will have to prove to us that you know how to do this.
Maintenance on certain banks on the lake will be sorted and path/swim work will done on the rest of the lake throughout the year, we do a fair bit of wood chip covering throughout the year on areas that are looking heavily used. The swims will be raised a little and sloped on the lake so water won’t sit on them, keeping them dry. We’ll use reasonable soil to infill the swims with chalk base that drains topped off with woodchip, similar to the track to blend the swims in with natural surroundings so bank sticks and pegs are reasonably easy to put in. I like the weeds and fauna that grow through the swims so the swims look more natural and will wood chip just the bivvy areas.
I’ve caught quite a few Carp on maggot and worm bait. This can turn a tricky days fishing into a very interesting one.