This is the picture of the biggest true crucian of the season. It topped the scales at 3lb 13oz and was banked by Korum-backed specialist Ed Matthews.
The specimen came from a little-known venue in Shropshire that Ed himself stocked with the species seven years ago.
He started his short afternoon session at Sutton Carp Syndicate in style with a brace of impressive fish of 3lb 4oz and 3lb 2oz, but the best was yet to come.
After rebaiting his spot with balls of groundbait laced with pellets and then recasting his simple feeder rigs over the top, it wasn’t long before the huge fish sucked up an 8mm Sonubaits oozing pineapple boilie.
Ed said: “I was so chuffed to have two three pounders I called my mate to come and take pictures and, as we were getting the shots, my rod rattled off again.
“As soon as it was in the net I could tell it was much bigger as it was much rounder with a higher back. I was overwhelmed, as I stocked these crucians when they were around 1in long and cared for them for so many years just hoping one day that they’d weigh over 3lb.
“Now it’s got me wondering just how big they could go."
His session-to-remember also produced fish weighing 2lb 10oz and 2lb 5oz, which were all taken on rigs that featured Korum Easy Feeders that were packed with 2mm pellets.
There are very few venues in the UK that hold genuine crucians because of the hybridisation that occurs with other fish.
Ed’s a supporter of the National Crucian Conservation Project (NCCP) which helps promote and protect the future of true crucians. Now he says he hopes the fish he’s nurtured will help inspire other fishery owners and managers to increase the spread of this popular but declining species.
“The exciting thing about this catch is how young the fish look. I hope the lake produces many more like it in what is a testing time for crucians,” he said.
“Their growth shows what’s possible. I just hope that what I’ve done helps inspire others to do the same and get on board with initiatives like the NCCP to play their part in seeing numbers of this wonderful species increase across the country.”