Barbel swims and habitats ?

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Barbel swims and habitats ?

Post by Grubenreiner » Tue Sep 03, 2013 10:09 am


last Sunday i was fishing with a friend on a small river that was new to us both in that stretch.
The stretch we could fish was divided in the middle by a weir.
Below the weir it looked like prime barbel fishing spots. Deep and fast Weirpools, flat and lone glides with loads of weed in the rather strong current and undercut banks on reedbeds with deep gullies now and then.
We didnt catch or even see any fish apart from some small chub in this whole faster and more lively looking stretch below the weir.

Above the weir there was a long slow section of water. Not much current, flat bottom, not to deep, no special features. We could spot a carp there so we decided to fish there for the evening. And we caught 12 barbel up to 4 lbs in 4 hours, all on ledgered meat.

Aint this unnormal, or do the barbel just not know the text book rules for their prime spots :Confused: ?

Dont get me wrong, im pretty glad we found this spot and fished there, i am also sure that bigger barbel should be possible there. I am just very surprised by this incident and wanted to ask if any of you Gentlemen experienced similar stuff or could give me a hint why that is.


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Dave Burr
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Re: Barbel swims and habitats ?

Post by Dave Burr » Tue Sep 03, 2013 10:36 am

Fish of all species will live where it suits them, they haven't read the books that we use for reference :Happy: It is often the case with barbel that the most idyllic looking swim will be devoid of fish especially below a weir but a little farther downstream - the second bend - they will congregate. From the description of your stretch I would suggest that barbel are likely to hold downstream but to visit the fast pacey water to feed at dusk.

Another factor can be angling pressure of course, I know a river full of ideal looking swims but the big girls sit in some easily overlooked, slow water - they're not stupid but often us anglers are :Happy:

Anyway, you've found a cracking swim to fish and the chance of carp as well - go get them!

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Re: Barbel swims and habitats ?

Post by Bumble » Tue Sep 03, 2013 10:41 am

I always look for slack ares away from the main current Barbel and Chub will often rest up in a slack to give themselves a rest from holding station in the current, food also gets held up in the slack which I suspect is the main reason the fish can be found there.

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Re: Barbel swims and habitats ?

Post by JerryC » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:28 am

I'm very much in agreement with the above posts. Although I enjoy weirpool fishing I also spend much time searching for summer barbel in other areas not so often associated with them at that time of year such as the deep, slower swims – also backwaters. in my opinion it’s the age old thing of finding the fish, not being single sighted into following ‘trends’ into where they should be.
If you understand what you’re doing, you’re not learning anything...........

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