River Nene yields its biggest perch

A day-ticket stretch of the Nene has produced the biggest river perch of the season at 4lb 4oz.
The huge fish, which is believed to be the largest specimen ever caught from the River Nene in Cambridgeshire, was netted by local expert Paul Smith, who initially set out his stall for barbel on the popular waterway.
It wasn’t the only big perch to find his lobworm hookbait either as Paul backed up his new personal best with seven other fish over 2lb, which all came from a Peterborough & District Angling Association stretch of the river.
The local angler made the stunning haul when he link-legered his bait just a rodlength out from his own bank.
“I set out to go for the barbel, but there were so many canoeists in the area I decided to dig out a box of lobworms that I’d collected from the garden and go for perch, as the stretch had produced my previous pb of 3lb 12oz,” said Paul.
“The session started with a small perch, then a 5lb barbel, and the perch just kept getting bigger until the four-pounder turned up.
“I’ve been fishing in this area for 30 years and it’s by far the biggest perch I’ve ever heard of. It just goes to show how good this river is for specimen anglers.
“But I did lose a fish that felt much bigger than the 4lb 4oz specimen.
If it was a perch, it was absolutely massive.”
His simple paternoster rig featured three SSG shot, 10lb line and a large whole lobworm threaded on to a size 6 hook.
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