NEWS

This is the actual Thatcham Angling Association website and we do not have a Facebook page

The AGM will be on the 6th of April and not on the 9th as the permit states

 

We are pleased to announce that we have now introduced a stock of mixed carp in to jubilee.

They are about  3 to 4 lbs and are mostly mirror carp.

There is a few  pictures of what we stocked in to the lake now on the gallery so have a look and hope you catch them

We are sorry to announce that TAA will not have any match’s this year

You can now buy your 2016/17 permits now 

Please still use the old gate code to the lake complex as it won’t change until the 16th of june

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This rig was recovered from a fish in Hordern’s Mere recently. Take a careful look at it; you will not see many quite so dreadful!
The fish carrying this rig had absolutely no chance of shedding it and, had it become tethered on a snag, would have died a long, lingering death. It was lucky enough to be caught and to thereby have its potential death sentence lifted.
Anglers will be aware by now that we have some really huge carp in Horden’s Mere these days, fish that are the pride of the Association and a much-coveted target for many of our members. And, of course, fish of this calibre are priceless and irreplaceable. We have, therefore, to take every precaution against them being harmed by poor angling practice.
We will, correspondingly, continue to carry out random rig checks from time to time. We realise that this procedure is irksome for anglers but we really do have no choice. Please co-operate with bailiffs who ask to see your rigs as they have your best interests at heart. Needless to say, anglers who use such appalling rigs, especially those experienced anglers who should know better, will be dealt with severely.
Our preference on all such matters is education rather than punishment but, whether you are a beginner or a hardened specimen hunter, it is your responsibility to know how to fish safely. There has never been such a wealth of instructional information available on carp fishing – in both the angling press and on the Internet – so there really is no excuse for using “death rigs”.
Steve Morgan (Chairman)

Click here to download underwater footage of thatcham fish.

The “Halfway” Rule

Rule 5.20 states “no casting beyond half-way on still waters“. This rule was adopted at an AGM four years ago where a majority of members present voted for it.

Until now we have taken a very pragmatic view in implementing this rule. If an angler is casting over half-way into uncontested water, (ie has  no-one actually fishing opposite or wanting to do so), then we allow them to continue – on the strict understanding that should some-one appear on the far bank wanting to fish then they must reel in and withdraw to their half of the lake.

However, the stupid and selfish actions of certain anglers have obliged us to think again. In particular:

  • We have seen a number of cases of pleasure anglers wanting to fish the margins for silver fish but being intimidated by carpers casting heavy leads into their swim.
  • We have found carpers casting heavy leads onto the far bank before walking round to the far side, attaching a baited terminal rig and throwing the lead and rig into tight marginal swims that they couldn’t otherwise cast to. These “chancers” seem to be oblivious to the obvious possibility of a run and a snagged fish before they are able to return to their rods.
  • We have retrieved a large quantity of terminal gear from marginal snags (mainly on Horden’s Mere) where carpers have fished too close to snags and/or not been alert enough to deal with runs before the fish snagged itself.

This isn’t a general tirade against carp anglers, most of whom behave responsibly and fairly, but the actions of the few have forced us to act, both to protect fish and to ensure that non-carpers get a fair deal.

Therefore, from now on, the halfway rule will be strictly enforced and offenders will be the subject of disciplinary action.

Steve Morgan (Chairman) and Stuart Collins (Head Bailiff). 16/06/16

 
 

THE RAT PROBLEM AT THE LAKES COMPLEX

We all know just what a nuisance the rats at our lakes have become. Less obvious is how to deal with the problem. We have tried both poisoning and trapping without success – the rats have become immune to commercial poisons and are too intelligent to get caught regularly in traps. So we recently decided to get a professional assessment, to determine how bad the problem is and to examine possible methods of control. The report is at this link.

The good news is that we appear to have quite a low population of resident rats. However, the bad news is that rats have an exceptionally good sense of smell and can cover large areas very quickly. Thus, when the lakes are busy and the smell of food and bait is in the air, the rats quickly converge on the lakes, coming from far afield in Newbury and Thatcham. Thus, to quite a large extent, we create the problem ourselves simply by being present on the lakes!

What can we do about it? Well, we looked at methods of control such as trapping, shooting and hunting with dogs or birds of prey. However, all of these are difficult to implement and are expensive. Furthermore, they offer only temporary and/or partial respite. To cut a long story short – kill one rat and another quickly moves in to fill the vacuum.

The advice we received was to eliminate as far as possible the places where rats nest (mainly woodpiles and dense scrub) and to avoid litter and spilled bait and food. We will play our part by removing piles of cut wood. (This is not an easy task and will take time, not least because we are limited by the local Council in the number of bonfires we can have and in when we can have them). In addition we strongly urge you to:

  • • remove litter from around your swim as soon as you arrive, whether it yours or not. Litter will attract rats. If you want rats around your bivvy at night just leave that litter where it is!
  • • avoid spillage of bait; if you use a spod consider designs (like the “Spomb”) which minimise spillage.
  • • avoid baiting shallow areas near the bankside; rats can easily dive for food in six feet of water.
  • • secure both food and bait securely when not immediately in use.
  • • clean up cooking utensils immediately after use.
  • • use the toilet provided; do not defecate in the woods. (You know who you are!).

By being scrupulous about “bankside hygiene” in this way we stand some chance of at least minimising the problem. However, if the problem deteriorates we will be obliged to consider stricter rules and/or spending some of your money on eradication. But, given the relatively low level of infestation currently, (compared with West Berkshire in general!), we hope that the common sense measures above will be adequate.

Steve Morgan (Chairman)