Crucian ice

Crucian iceRead the works of L.P. Sabaneev remember that, according to the classic, crucian carp sleeps in winter and it is useless to catch it from the ice. However, over the past century, much has changed, and in recent years, winter biting of crucian carp has become quite common. Why this is happening is hard to say. Perhaps, in different water bodies and the reasons are different. Surely we can only say that crucian carp takes better during the thaw, but this is not surprising: when oxygen-saturated water flows into the holes, the whole fish becomes more active. The first time I caught crucian carp from ice a few years ago, in March, on Lake Biserovskoye near Moscow. In summer, this reservoir attracts an abundance of carp, and in winter, fishermen come mainly for roach and scavenger. But it turned out that crucian carp pecked there with might and main. Fishing was very interesting and varied.

Part of the crucians, and it seems that the main one, cruised under the ice in a large flock at a decent distance from the coast. The rest, less numerous, but clearly larger, kept along the coastline in the snag at a depth of only half a meter. A crowd of anglers ran behind a flock of active crucian carp. Despite the noise from dozens of ice drills, crucian carp was taken well with a bloodworm and a bloodworm, and even a moth. Preferring quiet fishing, they caught crucian carp under the shore, where there were specimens of up to 400 grams. Caught on a stanchion for two or three fishing rods, placing them at a considerable distance from each other. Fishermen with experience of such fishing used unusually long nods. Their main advantage was that the bites, most often on the rise, were clearly visible even from 5-6 meters. Karas took quite confidently, although sometimes he still managed to spit out the nozzle before hooking.

I was surprised that no one used bait. It turned out she was collecting a huge amount of roach fry, which simply did not allow the mormyshka to go to the bottom. Together with crucian carp, 200-300 grams of perch, and sometimes half-kilogram carps, were also caught. At first, we tried to catch ordinary mormyshki with a thin hook, but with them there were a lot of idle bites. That fishing showed that the mormyshka for crucian carp should be small, but always with a disproportionately large hook, and from a sufficiently thick wire. The fact is that the crucian's lips are quite dense and the thin hook, when hooked, springs up, bends and does not penetrate, and the thick one hooks clearly. Catching crucian carp on Lake Biserovsky was remembered as a very fascinating activity, and when it recently became known that crucian carp bite well on one of the ponds near Borovsky in the Kaluga Region, we did not hesitate for a long time. The place turned out to be very popular: even on a weekday there were two hundred people on the ice.

The reservoir is unremarkable. The bottom relief is the most common: the maximum depth, up to 3.5 m, near the dam and on the channel, there is a gradual increase towards the shore, the average depth is about 2.5 m. Thickets of grass did not come across. It was immediately evident that the fishermen formed two large groups on ice, between which there was a vast unoccupied space. Most likely, there was no such special reason, for example, attachment to the relief, such an arrangement, the usual herd feeling just worked. In such cases, I usually go somewhere to the side, but this time, as I later realized, this was not worth doing. Not knowing the road, we arrived much later than we wanted. But even after us, the people all tightened. Then we were told about a clear schedule operating on the pond: the best bite happens from the very early morning and after dinner. Therefore, locals, catching the morning, feed the holes and leave before dinner.

Most anglers used bream tactics: three to four holes and three fishing rods, float or nod. The distance between the holes is minimal, but with a depth of 2-2.5 m overlaps are rare. Unlike Lake Biserovskoye, everyone here was fishing with bait. I decided to use the simplest option: breadcrumbs and bloodworms, and added a large one. Such an additive for crucian, in my opinion, makes sense, since a large bloodworm moves more actively and is more noticeable at the bottom. Although everyone around them mainly used feeders, I preferred to feed by hand, as I usually do with shallow fishing depths. Moreover, crucian carp often even walks halfway even in winter, and falling food helps to lower it to the bottom. In addition, almost all feeders rattle, and when fishing for crucian carp this is completely useless. Having fed, I walked through the holes left by other fishermen: it is always interesting to see how and with what bait they fished. It turned out that most used the breading with a bloodworm, sometimes with the addition of ground seeds. Some, like me, fed or fed from their hands – this was evident from the bait on the walls of the holes. It became clear that with the bait I guessed right.

On the first checked foreign hole, I took 150 grams of crucian carp on a mormyshka with a bloodworm, on the next – a pair of the same. About an hour later, bites began on the holes I had fed, but they pecked less often than other fishermen. Having looked more closely, I realized that, most likely, I chose not the best place. The bulk of the anglers, actively carrying crucian carp, sat exactly in line. Maybe there is still some kind of difference in depths? I measured the hole on this line: the depth was 50 cm less than where I fed. I had to get over and "get into operation."

Things went better. It can be seen that the local crucian carp was clearly attached to the depth. Perhaps it was from this line that watering began. If there was more time, it was worth looking for crucian carp at the watering itself, behind the backs of fishermen. Crucian carp moves mainly flocking, so you have to rely more on choosing a place than on bait. However, it is rather difficult to find a point with a high concentration of crucian carp in an unfamiliar reservoir of a large area with a weakly pronounced coastal relief. To do this, it’s not enough to drill a couple of dozen holes. It should also be borne in mind that crucian carp are not roach and respond to bait more slowly: it can come up in half an hour, but maybe in three. In such cases, it remains only to navigate the fishermen pulling out the fish.

As I understand it, a rather rare situation has developed: the best place was in the location of the bulk of the fishermen, and not aside, as is usually the case. The locals, who were many in the crowd, knew well the habits of their crucian carp, and besides, where he was constantly fed, he often kept there. Unfortunately, while we all understood this, time passed, but we still managed to catch crucians.

Most of them used fishing gear, but I still preferred mormyshka. In this fishing, I did not use purely sporting gear: I set the fishing line to 0.1 mm. The best mormyshka turned out to be small, 2.5 mm in diameter, but with a large hook, on which I planted 4-5 large bloodworms. For many anglers, on the float rods the main line was 0.18-0.2 mm and leashes 0.15 mm, and on the rods with nods it stood 0.14-0.15 mm. I think this is all too much: even for a half-kilogram crucian, 0.1 mm is enough, and larger ones did not come across there. Crucian carp was active, but when fighting, it still resisted much weaker than in summer. Nevertheless, fishing was a great pleasure.

Good crucian fishing happens infrequently in winter, at least in the suburbs. And how pleasant it is to recall the taste of fried crucian carp in sour cream in the middle of winter. And although this dish requires some fuss in the kitchen, the pleasure of the result is worth it.

author Roman BUTUZOV

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Amanda K. Benson

Author: Amanda K. Benson

Hi, my name is Amanda K. Benson. Since you, dear reader, have appeared on the page of my blog, it means that you are interested in something. Then you need to know who is writing these articles for you. We will meet and I will tell you a little about myself.

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