Is this the picture of the biggest ever roach landed on rod and line anywhere in the world?
Specimen angler and fishing guide Dan Sales banked the huge 4lb 7oz fish from the River Ebro in Spain.
The Herts-based rod caught the specimen, which is 3oz bigger than the current British record, during a two-day session on the river, where he kicked things off by introducing 20kg of groundbait, laced with particles.
After moulding the mix into 120 large balls, Dan and his fishing partner Paul Goldsmith formed a huge bed of feed, which pulled in the venue’s vast shoals of big roach.
By the end of the first day their feederfished sweetcorn hookbaits had accounted for around 60 fish to a best of 2lb 13oz, but nothing could have prepared Dan for what happened the following morning when he banked roach weighing 3lb 9oz and 3lb 11oz followed by the potential record breaker.
“This roach was like nothing I’ve ever seen before - the tip of its tail nestled in the crease of my elbow with the rest of it stretched all the way to the tip of my middle finger,” said Dan.
“All of my biggest fish came in one manic spell, when I’m sure that a shoal of really big roach just moved in over the feed and pushed the smaller fish out of the swim.
Dan’s roach, which was caught using 6lb Drennan Supplex mainline and a size 12 hook, beats his previous biggest from the River Ebro by 4oz. Big as it is, he reckons it could be just the tip of the iceberg.
“I’ve fished the Ebro for 15 years and have seen some truly huge fish that have been caught in nets and used as deadbaits for the catfish that could have easily been over 5lb. I’ve also seen fish topping at first light that have really blown my mind,” he added.
“To catch a fish that looked so young, healthy and with so much more room to grow is a perfect proof that this fish is just a glimpse of what is swimming around in this river. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it holds a 6lb roach.”
*Dan runs a roach fishing guiding service on the River Ebro. To enquire about trips, email him at: firstname.lastname@example.org