Fishery has 'too many big roach'

ROACH anglers across the nation are being invited to fill their nets with specimens to over 3lb in a bid to remove the species from a popular big carp water after members complained that there are just ‘too many huge fish’.

Over the last few years the resident redfins in Wyre Lake, which is part of the popular Wyreside complex in Lancashire, have been gorging themselves on boilies and other high-protein baits intended for the carp. This has seen them pile on weight at a rate of knots, and the sheer numbers of roach in the fishery has now become a problem.

In a bid to thin out the stocks, over the last four months match and pleasure anglers have been using rod and line to remove over a tonne of fish, with the biggest individual topping the scales at 2lb 12oz. All of the fish caught have been moved into Fox’s Lake, which already holds large numbers of the species and has produced fish to over 3lb in the past year.

But venue bosses are now asking for help from Angling Times readers with the ongoing ‘destocking’ programme, which is scheduled to continue throughout the winter.

“The carpers are getting so inundated with big roach that it has become a bit of a problem, so we’ve been trying to thin them out. There has already been a staggering number caught, but we need more help,” said Sally Hughes, owner of Wyreside Lakes.

“These fish have grown so quickly, and there’s no coincidence that the biggest ones have been caught on boilies. It would be great if AT readers would come along to catch these fish. Not only will they be helping us and the carp anglers out, but there’s a realistic chance of catching the fish of a lifetime.”

The invite will come as music to the ears of many roach enthusiasts and fish scientist Mark Everard, who’s written books on the species, is of the opinion that if he was to go in search of a British record he’d concentrate his efforts on fisheries such as Wyreside Lakes.

“They are a perfect breeding ground for huge roach. As well as there being an endless supply of high protein bait, the number of people on the banks helps to deter predators such as otters and cormorants,” said Mark.

“If I lived closer I’d be there like a shot. I’d strongly advise any roach angler to take Sally up on her offer because there’s no doubt in my mind that the next record will come from a water like this.”

*To find out more about Wyreside Lakes visit: or call 01524 792093