Friday, 30 July 2010

Poor Old Pike?

The Intrepid Piscator It's the time of year when tackle companies start to think towards the colder months and start to pitch predator products to us.

I received a visit today by a rep from an incredibly reputable company, a company that I have a lot of respect for.

Whilst pitching a new predator product I became aware that, to me, there MAY be an issue of fish safety and voiced my concerns. To be fair, the fellow, far from going defensive, appreciated the feedback, stating that my point was valid .
It seems to me that this most beautiful and delicate of course fish gets a bit of a rough trot.
In Carp and Barbel angling, fish safety has become paramount, and rightly so. I don't go overboard about it and there are no hard and fast rules, we all draw our own lines. I do believe though, that other species do not seem to be held in as high esteem by many anglers.
I have already voiced concerns aboout feeder rigs in this article. I still also get shown Pike rigs that will tether a fish should the main line snap, resulting in a miserable death for the poor creature. I still get asked for those archaic Pike gags which seem an ideal tool for smashing teeth(I don't sell them) and I also have some reservations on the use of treble hooks.
I would be interested to hear your views, I know that many of you fish for I right? Is the much maligned and misunderstood Esox a victim of a different way of thinking, or do they deserve the same respect that Carp receive.


  1. They most certainly do deserve due respect. I think that there should be a separate license for pike with proof of competency needed. Lots of so called experienced anglers still fear them and handle them badly.

    Single or double hooks do the job, gags should be banned. Love your pike should be the motto.

  2. I think you are dead right the pike does not get treated with the same respect as other coarse fish. For example, how many plugs do you see with at least two formidable looking trebles, barbed of course? These hooks are so robust I've had trouble squashing the barbs down on the few in my collection.
    Regards, Dave.

  3. Thanks for your input fellas, I've found that hair-rigging chunks of fish on large single hooks is more than adequate to catch a Pike.
    It is also bizarre that many 'anglers' fishing for this species seem terrified of them !!!

  4. Gurn,

    You are right many people who fish for Pike seem to have no idea on how to handle,this most delicate of species.And are scared of the fish when on the bank.If people are scared,then do not fish for them until you have been shown how to handle them.

    I do use two trebles,though barbless hooks and I've not deep hooked a Pike in years.I do though just tend to float fish on rivers and hit my " takes" very quickly.

    As for Gags,It's just an archaic practice.

    Monty D

  5. I only use doubles, have done for many a season now. The FAS will only allow you to fish their waters for pike once you have attended a "teach-in" and have attained your stamp, they check you tackle is suitable and they also get you to handle a pike.

    It is a very good course, a couple of things i did not agree with but they where minor differences of opinion but in general a good thing to do.

  6. Can you still eat pike in the UK ? You used to be able to if I remember well?