Pike Fishing Guidelines

These recommendations were put together using information gathered from several clubs, private syndicates and the Pike Anglers Club of GB and Ireland. Its aim is to protect what is without a doubt the most valuable fish in our waters (both economically and environmentally).

Seasons: In warm water a pike will fight harder than almost any other fish in UK waters and they have a very slow recovery rate compared to carp and tench. In times of low oxygen, a deep hooked pike has very little chance of survival. To minimise this risk, it is recommended that from 1st May pike are only fished for with lures. Fish baits may be used after 1st October but anglers are asked to use the most sensitive form of bite indication that is practical on the day.

Line: It is well known that a pike will pull as hard as you let it. If you are using a fine line and a light rod, it is possible to land even the biggest pike, but if you are fishing for pike then it is recommended that a minimum breaking strain of 10lb is used as if you snap up and a pike is left with a treble hook in its throat, it will most likely die.

Hooks: Semi Barbed Treble hooks can be used when fishing with livebaits or deadbaits.

Wire: The trace wire used must mirror the breaking strain of the mainline with 15lb the recommended minimum.

Forceps: Every angler must carry with him 2 pairs of forceps with one pair at least 12″ long. A pair of side cutters should also be carried as it is better to cut a treble hook into pieces than to leave a fish with its throat stitched up. A gardening glove will protect your hand from the small teeth whilst you unhook your catch.

Landing nets: It is better to have a net that is too big than one that is too small. Our waters hold some pretty large pike so a net with 38″ arms is the recommended minimum. You will also need a large unhooking mat.

Pike should only be retained for the minimum amount of time necessary. They must never be put in a keep net. If a proper pike tube is not available then a carp sack will do.

If you are having problems unhooking your catch, please ask another angler to help.