Patient observation was the key to Steve Teeson’s capture of this 15lb 4oz River Nene barbel record.
The Peterborough-based rod located a small group of big fish after hundreds of hours of searching the waterway over the past few seasons, efforts which culminated in his capture of a 14lb 10oz venue record last season.
And, certain there were bigger fish to be had, Steve went one better at the start of this campaign when he hooked the giant just after two o’clock in the morning.
“The fight was absolutely phenomenal. If I hadn’t been right next to my rods the fish would have snagged me for sure. As it was, I had to go in after it in order to play it out of danger. It went crazy and gave everything in the fight,” explained the 32-year-old welder.
Steve fed the swim with pellets and broken boilies and waded through a succession of chub until the swim went quiet after dark and the barbel moved out over his baited spot.
“I studied the swim from an inflatable to find the clear spots and then I spent days watching the fish before fishing. They follow the same fixed patrol three or four times a day. The thing is, the fish I caught definitely isn’t the biggest in the shoal – I’m sure there are bigger specimens to be caught, so watch this space,” he told Angling Times.
The Environment Agency stocked thousands of fish into the river, which flows through Northamptonshire and Cambridgeshire, throughout the 1990s. If the fish continue to grow at this rate, its likely that the Nene fish could soon challenge those in other nearby rivers, the Great Ouse and the Trent.
Steve tempted the specimen with a bolt-rigged 15mmm Mainline Activ-8 boilie and successfully played it to the net on 12lb mainline, a 15lb hooklink and a size 10 hook.