With an onshore wind just keeping a little colour in the water most days mackerel have generally been slow to show from most of the regions piers. The exception has been South Shields pier where huge shoals have been evident just off the pier end and anglers have been taking fish on lures even when the water has been coloured and over low water. Cod continue to be taken from here on early morning tides, pollack, coalfish, and wrasse have been taken on float fished baits, but plaice continue to be difficult to find. Roker pier is closed, Seaham North pier is for members only but will close shortly, which only leaves the Hartlepool piers where lots of mainly small flounders, dabs, whiting, coalfish, and codling have been taken by those anglers bait fishing whilst they wait for the water to clear up and the mackerel to arrive.
All of the Region’s rivers are a popular alternative, fresh crab will always have the edge to produce the better sized cod or coalfish, as well as flounders, but lots of anglers are taking big flounders on worm and mackerel baits, and a pleasure session should easily produce bags of over twenty mixed species regardless of size.
The water conditions around Eyemouth are usually nice and clear and visiting anglers have reported good bags of pollack taking lures and float fished baits, as well as wrasse and coalfish, and cod taking bottom fished fresh crab. Some anglers report bags of up to 20 fish with pollack up to 4lb being the main species. The rock edges around Craster, Beadnell, and Seahouses have also produced fish. Lee Rutherford won a Blyth match with two fish weighing 8lb 1oz, the best at 5½lb, taken at Beadnell. Jamie Mullen won an Alberta match at Craster with four cod for 8½lb. Paul Foster won a Tynemouth Wood trophy match with three cod totalling 5lb 14oz taken at St. Mary’s Island, and Callan Stevens won another Tynemouth match with five cod for a total of 11lb 7oz, the best weighing 3lb 14oz, at the Warriors.
The Seaham A.C. Potter trophy all night match fished in flat calm conditions, saw 23 out of the 40 anglers weigh in 24 whiting, nine flounders, seven dogfish, one cod, one coalfish and a pouting for 38.75lb. Winner Paul Edwards had six fish weighing 5.66lb from the North pier, Steven Laverick also fished the North pier to land three fish for 3.98lb, the best a dogfish of 2.38lb, and the pier produced four fish totalling 3.96lb to give Pat Carroll third place. P. Edwards and D. Wood won the team event with eight fish for 6.73lb.