Further proof of the surprises which are swimming around in our canals came this week when a netting operation on the Grand Union produced this massive 8lb 2oz eel.
The Canal & River Trust was in the process of relocating fish into the water below a section of canal at Watford Flight so that it could be drained for engineering works when the specimen was discovered.
James Kirk of MEM Fisheries, which was carrying out work for the Trust, said it was the biggest he had seen in 20 years in the job.
“What a monster! It’s rare to find an eel of this size on the canal network, it must be around 50-years-old and goes to show that you never know what you’ll find. We are helping the Canal & River Trust to carry out its annual winter programme of repair and restoration on its waterways,” he said.
It’s part of a five month, £45m programme of work to repair and restore hundreds of historic waterway structures and will see the Trust work with MEM Fisheries and local angling clubs to perform more fish rescues on venues. These include sections of the Kennet and Avon, Leeds and Liverpool, Staffordshire and Worcester, Shropshire Union, Rochdale, Monmouth and Brecon, Huddersfield Narrow and Grand Union Canals.