Mackerel and dolphins make a surprise winter visit

Joseph Bulmer

Normally a summer species, Mackerel have been caught by both boat and shore anglers in Torbay, giving good sport on light gear. As a consequence of these shoals, Dolphins have also been spotted.

Shore Anglers have been out in force and catching fish all around the South-west. Flounders are still the target for many, with Dan Hale finding them in the Teign and Paul Jones landing one weighing in at 2lbs 13 oz from the Plym.

Young Quin Parsons, son of Tim from Exmouth’s Hook, Line and Tackle, caught his first Flounder from the Exe. Rays always show well in the winter months with Dean Francis fishing several different marks and finding both Blonde and Thornbacks.

Aaron Bye travelled to the Minehead area and landed a fine Blonde of 14lbs 8oz. Shaun Miller fished with his son who landed a fine Spotted Ray of 5lbs 13oz, caught on Sardine bait. Also on the Bristol Channel, father and son duo Richard and Jack Reynolds found fish, with Richard landing a Whiting of 3lbs and Jack a Cod of 15lbs.

Torbay has been producing its share of good fish with Jason Upham and Will Booth both finding Bullhuss into double figures from rock marks, whilst Brixham Breakwater produced a Conger Eel of 19lbs 6oz to the rod of John Fairbrother. Tom Stebbens, fishing a Start Bay rock mark found an out-of-season Smoothhound eager to take his Bait. Another surprise fish this week is the 45lb Tope caught locally by Robbie Ginn.

Honiton SAC Member Tom Stebbens found Pollack and, after many years of searching, finally caught one of our mini species a Goldsinny. Matthew Parry fishing from a private boat on the Skerries caught the best Ray of the week a superb Thornback weighing in at 17lbs 12oz using a cocktail of South-west Sea baits Squid and Mackerel.

Not a local fish but worth a mention is the 17lb shore caught Halibut landed on a recent trip to Norway by Torquay’s Tony Phillips.

The fish of the month competition is kindly sponsored by Newbarn Angling Centre and Sidewinder Lures, please send pictures and catch reports to