Shaun Harrison explains his gripe with the TIMS (Thoughtless Inconsiderate Mallet Society) and offers some advice…
This year I decided to spend a little more time on a local venue before the otters move in and wipe the fish out. Unfortunately the so called do-gooders are still releasing otters into an environment struggling to cater for their savage destruction. But, this is another issue and not one for now.
I guess over the 37 year period I have fished for carp, I have in the latter years been rather spoilt by the venues I have been able to fish and indeed the incredible high standard of the anglers on most of these venues. This never really hit home to me as it was the norm and thus I simply got on with my angling the same as others and never really had anything to worry about. It mattered little if a decent angler slotted in next door as they were generally very discreet in their approach so would rarely disturb my baited areas or traps.
What a shock to the system it has been moving back to a normal ticket venue rather than the hand picked syndicate waters I have become used to.
I have kept my ticket for this local venue for several years using it mainly for a little winter action when I am wanting to bend the rods, but like I say with more otters being released around us I felt it time to have a bit of a go during the summer months.
Like all waters I fish, I watch what others are doing and then try and be different. It can be difficult on some waters coming up with a different scenario for the fish to stumble across other than being clever with bait. On here however it has been obvious over the years that most turn up, cast to their comfort zones then pile the bait in.
I have seen very few over the years margin fish this venue yet it is as perfect a margin water features wise as you could imagine with a sharp shelf dropping off quite fast in most swims and a lovely Canadian pond weed screen keeping the fish and the angler out of view of each other.
My last 3 sessions on there have seen me catch fish out of the edge but the last two sessions I have had my sport cut short after having a few fish by what I refer to as TIMS (Thoughtless Inconsiderate Mallet Society) and when challenged it is pretty obvious they are totally oblivious to the fact that they are ruining their own angling as well as that of others.
Last week-end I had caught a few then a TIM man turned up and proceeded to send shock waves through the bank thus through the water, I had felt the vibrations through the bank rather than heard them as it was so windy, so the fish armed with their ultra sensitive lateral line certainly did and after a succession of line bites from the fish still mooching about on my bait this totally ceased.
Exactly the same thing had happened on my previous session, I had caught and still had fish on the bait then a TIM man turned up and smacked his bivvy pegs in with a mallet. The fish naturally melted away.
The ridiculous thing about this is that it is one of the most basic things we were taught when we started angling, to be quiet and discreet. To be fair after much experimenting in the past the carp don’t seem to mind noise it is vibration that freaks them out and really spooks them. Some fish are more sensitive to this than others but one spooked fish bolting takes the less sensitive fish with them. It is a natural shoal fish defence reaction.
We are angling for wild creatures, treat them the same as you would if you were wanting to get up close to view wild birds.
This blog is a gripe but also a Blog to help.
I guess many just do not realise how sensitive the lateral line on a fish is to vibration. We all know not to tap on the glass of a fish tank, it distresses the fish, so why when trying to track down and catch a fish that can easily swim so far away from you would you want to give it the head start by letting them know you are there after them by beating pegs in with a mallet?
The real sad thing about this little bit of advice is that there is not one swim on this pit where it is not possible to push or screw bivvy pegs in!
Now there is another little tip before I sign off. Bivvy pegs are made with a screw thread as they are often easier to screw into hard ground than they are being pushed into the ground yet rarely do I see anyone taking advantage of the thread provided.
Best fishes Shaun Harrison.