Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:53 pm

A few shore sessions over the last few weeks..

The start of December saw myself, corbyeire and Ian meet up for an enjoyable few days fishing beaches and piers in Donegal. The fishing was particularly slow on the beaches, though what they made up for in a lack of fish they made up for in stunning scenery, but things improved markedly on one of the piers in particular where we caught some very decent dabs, managed doubles of strap congers, corbyeire got a decent conger, and got thornback ray, coley and pollack amongst other things. The chat and craic was good too of course and a few beers were had to round it off in the bars of Killybegs. Two incidents of note were when we saw a large wrasse coming to the surface to mouth a mack head at the edge of a pier only inches from our feet and when a woodcock, of all birds, flew across the shoreline at dusk and got caught-up in corbyeire's line. The woodcock is an oddball bird in my book, a nocturnal woodland bird with a bill that you'd more likely associate with a shoreline marine wading bird, but a beautiful bird nonetheless and the first one I'd ever seen. It was nice to see one up close. It was released unharmed.

Next up was a solo trip to a small beach on the north Antrim coast. I was hoping for a bass but fishing was slow and the only fish caught was a hard fighting coley of about 1.5lb. The fish had taken the hook deep so I dispatched it and had it for supper that evening. The interesting thing was its stomach contents, its belly was stuffed with a whole array of small colourful snails.

Finally, yesterday saw johnpaddywest obligingly make the trip up from Co.Armagh to fish a local beach of mine on the east Antrim coast, in Red Bay. The hope was for a bass but we were told (typically, lol) by others that we "should have been here last week!", when the bass were "jumping up the line".. The numbers and sizes of fish varied depending on the angler we were speaking to lol but the case seemed true enough all right; the main contributing factor to this bass bonanza seemingly being the large surf that was on the beach at that time. The fishing was slow for myself and Paddy yesterday but at least we saved the blank with a few tiddlers of whiting, coley and cod, and one semi-decent coley. An enjoyable session on a beautiful beach under flat calm conditions - a campfire was lit, a few coffees were had (I'll try and remember the buns next time Paddy :D ) and it was great to get a catch-up. I'll certainly be keeping an eye on the conditions of that beach from here on..
p.s. Don't mention or ask who caught that coley yesterday... but johnwest is certainly posing with it :?: :?: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Last edited by chuckaroo on Mon Jan 22, 2018 1:48 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:58 pm




the stomach contents of the coley:
P1064042 resize.jpg

the stomach contents of a flounder that was cleaned and cooked on one of the beaches, it was full of some sort of marine isopod:
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Last edited by chuckaroo on Mon Jan 22, 2018 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Mon Jan 22, 2018 12:02 pm

Great pics and report charlie. I showed the woodcock pic to a ranger i know who was very impressed

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Mon Jan 22, 2018 4:04 pm

Great report Charlie and great pics too; like the woodcock in particular. I shot a few years ago but never caught one! I suppose you ate the shellfish from the coley, a nice starter. The drive across the high ground to the Antrim beach was spectacular in the snow and sunshine, the fish just a bonus. About that 40cm coalfish I'm posing with, you can claim it but you'll have to concede that specimen painted Ray you "stole" from me a while back! We also had a single doggie as well that night to add to the species list.

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Mon Jan 22, 2018 8:09 pm

well done lads

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Tue Jan 23, 2018 12:40 pm

Good fishing there lads, curious to see all the snails in the coalies stomach.

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Fri Feb 02, 2018 9:47 am

what a cracking report chuck :D ,( woodcock is lovely with black pepper and fried onions ) :wink:

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:11 pm

great report and some very nice fish there.what size was the big conger??

Re: Donegal & Antrim - late reports

Thu Feb 22, 2018 9:20 pm

Lovely stuff Charlie et al. The elusive North coast bass strikes again but at least a few other fish to keep you busy!