Tackle and Tactics
Mike Ladle

Information Page.

Alan in Canada.

My pal Alan Bulmer has been on a trip to Canada (from his home in New Zealand) and he’s done a spot of interesting fishing.

His first report was of a 12lb pike which he landed on 6lb monofilament with no wire trace – he says it was “a bit tricky”! He also says that his Canadian guide was fascinated by descriptions of UK pike fishing tactics.

I replied as follows -

Nice pike! It is interesting that the pattern of pale spots and stripes differs from pike that I catch in the UK, I presume that these are some sort of racial characteristics. I saw the same sort of differences in pike from a fish market in the Mediterranean (Crete I think?). I'll dig out some pictures and we can compare them.

I did. My next email continued -

Here are the pike pictures as promised. The 'English' pike tend to have oblique rows of pale spots merging into stripes dorsally. Your fish is the biggest but it's not a size thing. Interesting don't you think? Why? I expect it could be the subject of a PhD study for some anal person.

I also asked -

”Did it fight well? I expect it put up a fair show on light line but not as good as a snapper or kahawai eh?”

After that Alan had been out doing a spot of sea fishing (he’s a real ‘All Rounder'). He said -

The salmon is a 14 lb. chinook and the ‘cod’ (actually a species of 'redfish' or Sebastes) weighed about 6 lb. Both caught on a lure which was 3" long. Stunning fish. Big Canadian fish like small lures as well...

Then I asked him about his tactics -

Were you fishing with the flasher in your picture? I made myself one after my trip to Vancouver Island years ago. I have never used it but the principle is sound if you fish from boats anywhere. They used to attach a plastic squid about a foot behind the wildly gyrating dinner plate. I had a couple of coho from the rocks on a small silver pirk (similar to the one in your picture) when I was over there but I never caught a chinook.

...and he says –

The lures are attached about 18" behind the plate. They never use big lures and catch salmon up to 38lb - on both hard bodied and squid types. Currently fish are only 7-14lb as it’s before main run.

I'm always joking with Alan about the 'small' lures which he favours. Of course different species of fish have preferences for prey of varying sizes so it's horses for courses. Fascinating stuff and I'd have really enjoyed fishing with my pal if it had been possible. There’s just too much fishing and not enough time for me to do it.

If you have any comments or questions about fish, methods, tactics or 'what have you.'get in touch with me by sending an E-MAIL to - docladle@hotmail.com

Canadian 'spotty' pike.

Another spotty monster.'

English pike with oblique dorsal markings.

Another spotty monster.'

Italian 'scribbled' pike.

Another spotty monster.'

Flasher and small metal 'prisma type' pirk.

Another spotty monster.'

Chinook salmon. Note the violet side stripe typical of many silver marine fish including our Atlantic salmon.

Another spotty monster.'

Alan's 'cod' or rockfish, a species of Sebastes

Another spotty monster.'