Other fish

There are quite a few other British freshwater fish that anglers may encounter from time to time, and here they are:

 

Ruffe
Orfe
Bullhead
Stone loach
Minnow
Bitterling
Goldfish
Three-spined stickleback
12-spined stickleback

 


Ruffe

 

 

The ruffe resembles a small perch. They grow to around 4 inches and tend to be olive brown to golden brown along its back with a yellow/white underbelly. The dorsal fin protrudes proudly just like that of the perch, plus it's spiny.


Orfe

 

 

Sometimes called Ide, the orfe can be golden or silver. They are not an indigenous species to the British Isles, with some orfe stocked into stillwaters dotted around the country. The fins of ide tend to be a shade of red, the brightness of which will vary according to the clarity and quality of the water. They will feed at any level in the water, from the bottom silt to the surface.


Bullhead

 

 

Sometimes called the Miller's Thumb, the bullhead is a boisterous little fish that has a large head that tapers into a long catfish like tail. They have brown flanks and backs with a cream underbelly. Their backs can slowly change colour to suit the background, ensuring that they are always camouflaged. They can be found throughout Europe, mainly in stony clear streams.


Stone loach

 

 

This tiny barbel-like fish has six barbules protruding from its lower jaw. It has dark olive-brown mottled colouration over the flanks and back and a creamy underbelly. It prefers stony rivers and streams, particularly in the south and mid-areas of England and Wales.


Minnow

 

 

These tiny fish can be a bit of a pest when fishing with maggots as they shoal together and attack small baits. They are up to 2inches long and are brown/green on top with a dark line along the flanks. They are found in rivers, lakes, ponds and streams across Europe.


Stickleback

 

 

There are two types of stickleback: the common three-spined and the much less common 12-spined. As the name suggests, they have sines on their backs, just infront of their dorsal fins. They are olive brown with mottled backs. The males' bellies turn rosy red just prior to spawning, and the males also build small nests in which they attract the females to breed.


Bitterling

 

 

This is one of the smallest of all British freshwater fish. When the male is fully grown it is around 3 inches long, while the female is a mere 2 inches. The male assumes wonderful colours during the breeding time, and that's why it is sometimes called the Rainbow fish. They are extremely rare in Britain - you may encounter the odd bitterling in the southern counties.


Goldfish

 

 

Some fisheries stock goldfish of all sorts in their commercial fisheries - a cheaper way to bulk up their stocks. They can range in size and colour, from brown through to blue, and all colours in between. Brown goldfish are very often mistaken for crucian carp. To catch a goldfish or two, simply use the same tactics as you would when fishing for a carp of any size.

 

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