Rural Reading: Fishing for a glimpse of wildlifeBy Adrian Lawson
October 08, 2010
It lookS like we are in for a good weekend – if the weather forecasters are to be believed.
I have been yearning to do something for ages and it might be that this weekend is the best chance to do it.
Last weekend I walked around the gravel pits where there were several people fishing.
There were a couple of places where the fishermen cut the vegetation so they could sit and fish unimpeded. As there was nobody fishing in a couple of these spots they offered me a great place to stop and scan the water with my binoculars.
I was lucky to see a kingfisher, I watched some great crested grebes diving for fish, and several tufted ducks diving for food.
The margins were alive with insects, the surface was covered with a few hundred whirligig beetles. A large emperor dragonfly hunted backwards and forwards over the water.
Once I had settled into a spot for a few minutes I noticed that there were lots of things unseen to anyone casually walking past. A large carp swam close to the bank, its great fins gracefully propelling it silently along until it just sank out of sight. I waited a while but it never reappeared. Further out in the lake a small shoal of fish erupted from the surface, probably chased by a pike or a perch.
Apart from watching the wildlife there was little other obvious reason to linger. The view of the willows reflected in the water and the prospect of something coming along if I waited was very alluring, but I was out for a walk and soon I started walking again.
All week it nagged me, I would much rather have stopped there for an hour or two.
Then my neighbour came round and asked if he could borrow my fishing rod. He went fishing in the middle of the week and then gave me back the rod and reel – and the penny dropped. All I had to do was to take the rod and reel, a little stool, some sandwiches and a flask of coffee and find a little spot – I could sit there all day.
And that is what I am going to do this weekend.