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The Website for all Anglers

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



Barbel  latin name: Barbus barbus



Bleak Alburnus alburnas fish species



bream  - latin name - Abramis Brama



Carp Cyprinidae  Cyprinus carpio



crucian carp

Crucian Carp


chub -  Leuciscus_cephalus



Dace - latin name - Leuciscus leuciscus



eel - latin name - Anguilla anguilla



grayling Latin name thymallus thymallus



Gudgeon Latin name Gobio gobio






pike latin name: esox lucius



Roach latin name: Rutilus Rutilus



Rudd - latin name- Scardinius erythrophthalmus






sliver bream

Silver Bream


Tench latin name: Tinca Tinca




Wels Catfish


Zander - latin name - Stizostedion lucioperca



Species of UK Coarse Fish



Description, baits and methods of fishing for Perch


Common name:  Perch
Latin name: 
Perca fluviatilis
Family: Percidae


image of a perch - perca fluviatilis


Current UK Rod Caught Coarse Fish Record

PERCH (Perca fluviatilis) 5lb 15oz 2006 Les Brown, Stillwater at Crowborough, Sussex


Description and habitat of Perch:
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. The body of the perch is rough to the touch as the small scales are imbedded deep in the skin. The perch will probably be the first fish an angler catches because they are a very aggressive predator that will bite at almost anything. The perch live in still, slow and fast running waters, lakes, ponds, rivers and canals. They can be found where there is underwater obstacles or structures, tree roots, weed beds and overhanging trees as they are all good places to hide and ambush anything edible. Larger perch will eat smaller fish such as minnows, roach and dace. Natural food for perch include; crustaceans, insects, flies, mayfly, caddis fly, larvae, worms and all fish fry. The average size perch is 4oz to 1lb with anything over 2lb considered a very good fish.

Fishing Methods for catching Perch:
Perch can be caught using various methods including float, ledger, feeder, free-lining, drop shot fishing, spinning with lures and even fly fishing. The venue will determine the best method and perch can be caught throughout the year although most are caught during the summer months.

For general fishing a medium 10 0r 12 foot rod with a fixed spool reel fitted with a 3 or 4lb line, hook size of 16 or larger depending on the bait used is ok. I find the best bait for catching perch is a lobworm hooked through the middle with a small piece of rubber pushed onto the hook to prevent the worm slipping off. After hooking the lobworm I pinch off the end of the tail of the worm; this makes the worm wriggle more and releases a scent into the water which will hopefully attract the perch. Used in conjunction with chopped worm this is a deadly combination. I always use barbless hooks because they cause less damage to the fish and are easier to unhook but this is a personal preference.
On stillwaters, lakes and ponds, try float fishing using a waggler with a big lobworm on a size 10 hook. Plumb the depth and fish overdepth by 6 inches. Use chopped worm mixed in with your groundbait and throw a couple of balls in at the start. The smell from the chopped worm will attract the perch which will hopefully take your lobworm. If you don't get a bite after a few minutes, try twitching your bait (reel in a couple of turns) this sometimes induces the perch to bite. If you know there is an underwater feature in your swim, cast near to this.
A typical approach when perch fishing in rivers or flowing waters is trotting as I described under Fishing methods for catching Chub.

Use a stick float or in faster waters a big Avon or a Loafer that carries a lot of shot. The float and shotting pattern will depend on the speed of the water flow and where in the water the perch are located. Plumb the water to get the depth and start by stringing the shot out button style and letting the float and baited hook flow at the same speed as the water. The baited hook needs to be in front of the float so hold back (stop the float) for a couple of seconds every couple of yards or so. (the reason for this is the current nearer the river bed is slower than the surface so holding back the float will allow the baited hook to stay in front - you'll get the hang of it!). Feed chopped worm every second or third cast to attract the perch. After a few run throughs if you get no bites try altering the shot by moving it nearer the hook or bunching every second shot together. If fishing a fast flowing water try using an Avon type float and fix the shot nearer the hook to keep it closer to the river bed. Another method is free-lining. This is ok where there is little flow on the water. Attach a single swan shot (SSG) about a foot up the line from the hook and again fish a large lobworm on the hook. The lobworm will bounce along the river bed and hopefully be intercepted by the perch. The feeder rod can also be used. Make sure you use enough weight to hold the bait on the bottom of the river bed. Start with a 24 inch hook length, bait your hook with a lobworm, fill you feeder with groundbait containing chopped worm and cast in. Perch can also be caught spinning with plugs and spinners which is a good way of fishing for perch because it allows you to move up and down the water and find where the perch are. Another method is Drop Shot Fishing; this is an exciting and productive way to catch perch and this has been written about under its own section, A Guide to Drop Shot Fishing.


Baits for catching Perch:
Worms, lobworms, dendrobaena worms, red worm, brandlings, minnow, casters, maggots. Also caught using plugs, lures and spinners. The perch has also been known to be caught on flies used by trout fishermen.






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