Somerset and Avon Fishing

The lower section of the Bristol Channel and Bridgwater Bay do not contain sea fishing of high quality. There has been a marked deterioration in recent years. Local anglers blame pollution.

An October cod run provides the best of the shore fishing but fish weighing 10 lb. And more are rare; the bulk of the fish are in the 3-7lb. Range. The area around Clevedon is considered the best for cod but the very big tides restrict fishing to periods around both high and low water.

Bass show best in the autumn and thornback ray can also be taken from the shore. Conger fishing offers better than average sport, again in the autumn when the eels show a preference for the shallow areas.

Boat fishing produces a number of fish of the ray species including thornback and blondes. Bull huss are numerous and lesser spotted dogfish are sometimes located in veritable hordes, proving a nuisance simply by monopolising the bait.

Common skate were once caught in the Bristol Channel and local anglers nurture the hope that these big fish can be relocated. Minehead is the principal departure point for boats with Porlock and Blue Anchor bays con-taining some of the best marks.

Shark show from time to time in season but this area compares poorly with North Devon waters for shark of all species.

Minehead:

Shore fishing at Gasworks Beach, Madbrain Beach, Dunster Beach, Minehead Harbour Wall and the Promenade Wall can lead to catches of bass, cod, dab, flounder, mullet, pouting, tope and wrasse. A boatwill giveaccesstoanglerfish, bass, black bream, cod, conger, dogfish, garfish, mackerel, ray, topeand whiting.

Watchet,

Shore fishing at St Audries Bay, Bridgwater, Doniford, Blue Anchor Beach, Kilve and East Quantoxhead. Species caught include bass, cod, dab, flounder, mullet, sole and wrasse. Watchet harbour is a favourite venue.

Boat fishing can yield angler fish, bass, black and red bream, cod, conger, dogfish, mackerel, pouting, ray, tope, turbot and whiting. Lug from Blue Anchorand Doniford and king rag under rocks outside the harbour.

Weston-super-Mare:

Shore marks at Brean Down, Sand Point, Black Rock, Old Pier, breakwater and Knightstone harbour wall fish well for bass, cod, dab, flounder, plaice, silver eel, sole and whiting. Boatfishing marks at Weston Bay, mouth of Axe estuary and near Brean Down give catches of cod, conger, dogfish, mackerel, ray, sole and whiting.

Clevedon: Shore marks are at Ladye Bay and Sandbanks, at nearby Portishead. Cod, conger, dogfish, flatfish, thornback ray, and whiting are caught. The once popular pier is now in ruins and cannot befished.

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