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Fish Species found in the waters of the UK and Ireland

Species of UK Coarse Fish

British freshwater fish that anglers might come across when fishing the waters of the UK and Ireland

 

Information about different species of fish and how to catch them.


In this section about fish species I will be describing the fish that inhabit the rivers and lakes in the UK that you will be fishing for. Fish descriptions and details of fishing for them are for your general guidance and advice only but will hopefully help you catch more fish. Information includes the habitat and identification of the fish you might catch and methods of fishing and baits used for catching the different species.

 

Please note: Current UK records may be out of date. Please see here for latest record weights

 

Click on an image for more information

Barbel  latin name: Barbus barbus

Barbel

Bleak Alburnus alburnas fish species

Bleak

bream  - latin name - Abramis Brama

Bream

Carp Cyprinidae  Cyprinus carpio

Carp

crucian carp

Crucian Carp

chub -  Leuciscus_cephalus

Chub

Dace - latin name - Leuciscus leuciscus

Dace

eel - latin name - Anguilla anguilla

Eel

grayling Latin name thymallus thymallus

Grayling

Gudgeon Latin name Gobio gobio

Gudgeon

perch

Perch

pike latin name: esox lucius

Pike

Roach latin name: Rutilus Rutilus

Roach

ruffe

Ruffe

Rudd - latin name- Scardinius erythrophthalmus

Rudd

sliver bream

Silver Bream

Tench latin name: Tinca Tinca

Tench

Catfish

Wels Catfish

Zander - latin name - Stizostedion lucioperca

Zander

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barbel  latin name: Barbus barbus

Barbel

BARBEL  Barbus barbus

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

21lb 1oz 2006 Grahame King, Adams Mill Fishery, Bedford

 

The barbel is light brown to greenish brown with yellowish sides. The barbel's fins are darker except for the pectoral, pelvic and anal fins which are yellowish orange. The body of the barbel is elongated with very small scales and appears scale less. There are 55 to 65 scales in the lateral line of a barbels body.

 

link to fishing for Barbel  read more about fishing for Barbel

 

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Bleak Alburnus alburnas fish species

Bleak

BLEAK  Alburnus alburnas
Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

4oz 9dr 1998 D Flack from the River Lark in Cambridgeshire

The Bleak is a member of the cyprinid family. It is a slender fish with an elongated and flat sided body. It has a pointed head with large eyes and a small mouth that is turned upwards.  Colouration of the bleak is generally a shiny silvery colour.

 

link to fishing for Bleak  read more about fishing for Bleak

 

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bream  - latin name - Abramis Brama

Bream

BREAM     Common or Bronze    Abramis brama

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

19lb 10oz - 2005 - James Rust, Cambridge Water


Adult bream are deep bodied and bronze in colour with darker, sometimes black fins. The bream has a deep laterally compressed body with a prominent covering of protective slime. It has a long anal fin compared with the dorsal fin, a forked tail and a relatively small head and mouth with a protruding upper jaw.

 

link to fishing for Bream  read more about fishing for Bream . . .

 

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Carp Cyprinidae  Cyprinus carpio

Carp

CARP     Mirror    Cyprinus carpio

 

There are different variants of carp:-
Common carp, Mirror carp, Linear carp, Leather carp, Grass carp, Ghost carp and Koi carp

 

link to fishing for Carp  read more about fishing for Carp

 

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crucian carp

Crucian Carp

CARP Crucian     Carassius carassius

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

4lb 9oz 9 dr M Bowler, RMC Fishery, Yateley Lake

The Crucian Carp    Carassius carassius is amongst the smallest members of the family Cyprinidae, which includes other fish such as the Common Carp. Although of the same family as the Common Carp, the Crucian Carp is different in that it doesn't have barbules and rarely reaches a weight above 3.3lb    1.5 kg.

 

link to fishing for Crucian Carp  read more about fishing for Crucian Carp

 

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chub -  Leuciscus_cephalus

Chub

CHUB     Leuciscus cephalus

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record
9lb 5oz 2007 Andy Maker, Southern Stillwater

Nicknames include old rubber lips, loggerhead, chavender and chevin.
The chub is a thick set fish with a large blunt head. It has a long and cylindrical body with large greenish/brown scales that have a slight black edging across the back working down to a lighter golden flank and a light belly with a dark brown or black tail. The dorsal fin of the chub is a greyish/green colour, with all the other fins being orange/red. The chub has a large mouth with thick rubbery lips and a voracious appetite and will eat almost anything.

 

link to fishing for Chub  read more about fishing for Chub

 

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Dace - latin name - Leuciscus leuciscus

Dace

DACE    Leuciscus leuciscus

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

1lb 5oz 2dr 2002 Simon Ashton, River Weir

The Dace is a fast, lively, active fish, nicknamed 'the Dart', because of the way it darts through the fast flowing waters.
The Dace is closely related to the Chub but is a more streamlined fish and distinguished from the Chub by its anal and dorsal fins which are both concave, whereas the Chub's anal and dorsal fins are convex and red in colour.

 

link to fishing for Dace  read more about fishing for Dace

 

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eel - latin name - Anguilla anguilla

Eel

EEL   Anguilla anguilla

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

11lb 2oz 1978 Master S Terry, Kingfisher Lake, Nr Ringwood, Hants

The eel has an elongated body similar to that of a snake. Longish head with rounded eyes. The eyes are small in young eels and large in older and silver eels. The eel has a protruding lower jaw longer than the upper jaw. The teeth are small and set in bands in both jaws and in a patch on vomer. Small and vertical gill openings restricted to the sides.

 

link to fishing for Eels  read more about fishing for Eels

 

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grayling Latin name thymallus thymallus

Grayling

GRAYLING    Thymallus thymallus

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

4lb 3oz  1989 S R Lanigan, River Frome, Dorset


Grayling, affectionately known as, 'the Lady of the Stream', are members of the salmon family and are considered by some anglers as coarse fish and by others as game fish. Grayling with their huge dorsal fin are unmistakable from other fish. The Grayling is a streamlined fish with a small pointed head, silvery blue body with violet stripes and irregular dark spots on the flanks

 

link to fishing for Grayling  read more about fishing for Grayling

 

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Gudgeon Latin name Gobio gobio

Gudgeon

GUDGEON     Gobio gobio

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

5oz 1990 D H Hull, River Nadder, Sutton Mandeville, Wilts

Gudgeon are sometimes mistaken for small baby barbel but can very easily be identified. The gudgeon has two barbules     one barbule either side of its mouth  as opposed to the barbel which has four and the stone loach which has six barbules

 

link to fishing for Gudgeon  read more about fishing for Gudgeon

 

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perch

Perch

PERCH    Perca fluviatilis

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

5lb 15oz 2006 Les Brown, Stillwater at Crowborough, Sussex

Nickname ‘Stripey’. The perch has a flat-sided greenish body graduating down to a white belly. It has bright red/orange pelvic fins, two dorsal fins with five or more broad black vertical stripes down the sides. It has a row of sharp pointed spines along the dorsal fin so be careful when handling the perch

 

link to fishing for Perch  read more about fishing for Perch

 

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pike latin name: esox lucius

Pike

PIKE    Esox lucius

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

46lb 13oz 1992 R Lewis, Llandegfedd, Wales

Pike are unmistakable with its distinguished striped or spotted pattern body, large broad head, flattened snout and huge mouth full of sharp, backward facing teeth.
In 1980 a 62 million year old fossilised skeleton of Esox was discovered in Canada. There was also half a million years old fossilised remains of Esox lucius found in the Cromer Forest beds in Norfolk, Britain.

 

link to fishing for Pike  read more about fishing for Pike

 

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Roach latin name: Rutilus Rutilus

Roach

ROACH    Rutilus rutilus
Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

4lb 4oz - 2006 - Keith Berry, Northern Ireland Stillwater

Roach are a moderately deep bodied fish with silvery white sides, dark brown or grey back with a bluish or greenish tint, red/orange eyes, large silvery scales and red lower fins, hence the nickname, 'Redfin'.

 

link to fishing for Roach  read more about fishing for Roach

 

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ruffe

Ruffe

 

RUFFE    Gymnocephalus cernuus
Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record
5oz 4dr - 1980 - R J Jenkins, West View Farm, Cumbria

The Ruffe, also known as Pope or Tommy Ruffe, is a relative of the Perch -  Perca fluviatilis and sometimes mistaken by beginners to angling as a young perch due to the similar spiny dorsal fin.

 

link to fishing for Ruffe read more about fishing for Ruffe

 

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Rudd - latin name- Scardinius erythrophthalmus

Rudd

RUDD    Scardinius erythrophthalmus
Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

4lb 10oz 2001 Simon Parry, Co Armagh, Northern Ireland

The body of the rudd is flattened at the sides, the back is blue-green and the belly a silvery white. the dorsal fin and pectoral fins are reddish-grey and all other fins are a deep red. Rudd are often confused with Roach but can be identified by the dorsal fin which is set further back and starts behind imaginary vertical line projected upwards from the pelvic fins.

 

link to fishing for Rudd  read more about fishing for Rudd

 

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sliver bream

Silver Bream

 

Silver Bream    Abramis bjoerkna or Blicca bjoerkna
Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record
2lbs 15oz - 8th May 2009 - Mr Phillip Morton Mill Farm Fishery, Sussex

This record fish claim was ratified by BRFC on the10.07.09
Previously:
2lb 2oz 2005 Mrs Christine Smith, Mill Farm Fishery, Sussex
2lb 2oz 2008 Mr Alan Storey, West Sussex Fishery

Silver bream are smaller but similar to a young common bream and difficult to tell apart. The silver bream is a fairly deep bodied fish with a dark olive-green back, silvery sides and white under belly. The fins are pale and may be tinged pinkish. As young bream and silver bream are very similar a fin ray and scale count may be the only way to distinguish one from the other.

 

link to fishing for Silver Bream  read more about fishing for Silver Bream

 

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Tench latin name: Tinca Tinca

Tench

TENCH    Tinca tinca
Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

15lb 3oz 6dr - 2001 - D Ward

Tench are easily identified by their thick set, well rounded, dark olive green coloured body. The scales are very tiny which give them the appearance of being scale-less. The fins are rounded and the caudal fin is large almost unforked. The sexes can be distinguish by the shape of the pelvic fins on the underside of the body.

 

link to fishing for Tench  read more about fishing for Tench

 

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Catfish

Wels Catfish

 

WELS CATFISH    Silurus glanis

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record
62lb    28.123 kilo’s 1997 R Garner from Withy Pool, Henlow, Bedfordshire

The catfish, so named for their prominent barbules that look like a cat's whiskers is the longest and heaviest species of fish in the UK. It looks similar to an eel and has a long scale less body, an enormous head with six 'whiskers' protruding from it and an equally enormous mouth. The large head tapers back to the large tail. The fish has a small dorsal fin and an anal fin that stretches backwards until it almost reaches the tail.

 

link to fishing for Wels catfish  read more about fishing for Wels catfish

 

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Zander - latin name - Stizostedion lucioperca

Zander

 

ZANDER    Pikeperch    Sander lucioperca

Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

21lb 5oz 2007 James Benfield ! - in 2009 a 22lb specimen zander was caught from Grafham Water Park by Mick Dolan.

The Zander has a long body with a small and narrow head with large dark glassy eyes. The eyes look glassy because they incorporate a reflective plate or tapetum which increases their sensitivity at night and in poor light. The mouth is large with prominent backward pointing teeth. Pairs of fang like teeth found on the front of the lower and upper jaws that fit into hollows in the opposite side of the jaws.

 

link to fishing for Zander  read more about fishing for Zander

 

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The pages linked from this fish species section contains information on the habitat and identification of fish, the methods of fishing for a species of fish and various fishing baits often used for catching the different fish species.

 

Information I have provided for each and all fish species on this website is for general advice only.
No part of this website may be reproduced in any form or by any means.

 

 

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