Oh, what luscious Jolie-lips

2012-09-15 00:00

FULL luscious lips are not always limited to the source of some undisclosed Angelina Jolie fantasy. Sometimes these oversized appendages are the source of fishermen’s fantasies as they search for the ever-elusive and always skittish carp.

Carp are often the target of bait or bank anglers. “Papgooi” typically involves feeding an area that an angler intends targeting at an upcoming date. On the day of angling, the fisherman baits his hook with a “boilie” before balancing his rod on a stand and marking the line with a strike indicator. He repeats this process until all of his rods are set up with a variety of flavoured baits. The fisherman then grabs a beer and makes himself comfortable as he prepares for the imminent wait.

“Papgooi” seems like a pretty simple technique in theory. My experience has been nothing short of absolute failure. A few months ago, a few friends and I used our home-made kick boat, constructed almost entirely of PVC pipes, 20 litre oil containers and masking tape, to bait an area in Pelican Bay. We went back a few days later and precariously perched on the same kick boat. I paddled out our heavily baited lines before settling in for a long, and in my case, boundless, wait on the edge of the dam. Success in “papgooi” is thus obviously not guaranteed, but, then again, success in any form of fishing never is. Perhaps this is part of the allure of angling. Angling is challenging. It tests your ability, you endurance and most of all it tests your patience.

Carp, on the other hand, lack patience. Carp almost always go for the most easily available source of food. Perhaps this is why they often behave like a chubby Justin Bieber snacking on popcorn at the release of his latest autobiographical movie.

Carp can often be found feeding on the midges of an ample Albert Falls scum line or in muddy pockets along the shore.

It is always beneficial to vary your techniques and attempt new methods of angling that you may not be comfortable with. Carp are not only a species to be caught on bait and can be targeted using artificial lures.

There are two ways that carp feed. The first, as I have previously indicated, is on newly hatched midges, which have been blown together to form a scum line. These carp suck up their meal of choice with a delightful slurping sound. They are often very skittish and accuracy is of the utmost importance, but they can be the source of some fishing fun if you are equipped with a boat and a fly rod.

It is important to note whether the fish’s eyes are above or below the waterline, as this indicates whether the carp are eating midges that can be found on the surface of the water or just below it. Carp whose eyes are above the water line must be targeted with dry flies such as DDDs, whereas carp whose eyes are below the surface should be targeted with wet flies such as a nymph. It is also advantageous to match the fly to the hatch of midges, so that the naturally suspicious carp aren’t put off by an unnatural looking lure.

The other preferred feeding technique of carp involves digging their oversized lips in the mud and then using these to filter out tasty treats. These fish may be targeted by quietly sneaking up on the constant stream of bubbles, indicating a carp’s presence.

Whoever said that size doesn’t matter obviously hasn’t seen the long and often outrageous telescopic rods that artlure anglers have been known to use with such success. These rods are used to gently lower lead heads into the fish’s line of site before lowering it to where the fish’s mouth is estimated to be. This technique may also be used to target carp cruising in clear and open water.

With their lips like Jagger, it is no wonder that carp are so popular with the crowds of anglers often seen lining Tipiary Point. Just remember to play these fish gently. Their soft mouths require a delicate touch, as many anglers who croon about the one that got away have had to learn the hard way.

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