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Catching F1 carp

Catching F1 carp

A small F1 carp I caught from a local still water lake

F1 carp

These carp are a crossbreed between Crucian Carp and Common Carp. Fish farms breed these carp to be stocked in lakes and ponds throughout the UK and most of Europe as they tend to feed for most of the year. This is good for anglers who want to catch fish all year round and play a vital role when other course fish species are reluctant to feed.

Catching F1 carp can be frustrating even for the more experienced anglers

As F1 carp are very shy biting fish similar to Roach, a pole is usually the best way to catch these quick biting fish. Rigs are usually set up with thin diameter hook lengths such as 0.12mm for summer and 0.10mm for winter. Small shot should be used, usually no8 or no 10 shot. Floats will sometimes have to be dotted down to about 2-3mm of bristle showing if fishing with a pole to register the smallest of bites.

When fishing a waggler for F1 carp,

Rods should be light with a soft tip or through action and the angler should be ready for lighting fast bites! Floats should be heavy enough to cast to the required distance and a good starting point would be a 3 or 4BB waggler with a strung bulk of small shot, again number 8 or 10 shot. Hooks should be matched to the size of the bait being used and generally sizes from 20 to 16 are a perfect choice.

A pellet waggler makes a suitable alternative to hit quick bites as the self hooking properties of a heavy float come into play. The float then acts as a “bolt rig” and can set the hook even before you have time to strike in to the fish. This method would usually be used in the summer months when the fish are higher up in the water and are actively competing for food.

Feeding little and often

This is usually the best policy with either maggots or pellets to entice bites as the fish are “in and out” of the swim and don’t tend to sit over bait for long periods like skimmers or bream. Noise of the bait hitting the water can also draw more F1 carp into the swim or even get your first bite. If you are not getting bites it is always a good idea to keep the feed going in as the noise will eventually attract some F1s in to your swim.

So its over to you!

Keep tackle light and delicate,

Dot your float down, feed small amounts regularly creating a small “plop, plop, plop” sound to attract the fish. Then keep a keen eye on your float at all times waiting for it to shoot under. You will miss some bites but don’t worry to much as you will also connect with a lot of fish.

Take your time

When you do hit your bites, take your time either shipping your pole back, or reeling in if using a rod and line, and enjoy the feel of the fight from the fish. When the fish is close to the bank you can simply lift the fish from the water with your line, if a small fish, or if its a larger one use a landing net to scoop the fish. This can then be lifted from the water and you can enjoy your prize!


Hold the fish in your hand and using the other hand remove the hook. Most times the hook will be in the top lip of the fish and with a little practice the hook can be removed with your fingers by pushing it in the opposite direction that it went in. If the fish has swallowed the hook then a disgorger can be used. This tool can be slid down the line and over the hook and then pushed gently. The hook will then be released from the fish safely.

Barbless Hooks

I would strongly advise using¬†Barbless hooks as the don’t harm the fish when removing and the small hole where the hook has penetrated the fishes lips, this will simply heal as it grow. The fish can then be returned to the water safely so that others can also enjoy catching them.

Most of all enjoy your fishing experience.

Fishing is definitely a peaceful pastime and should be done with the view that nature is there for everyone to enjoy.¬†If the fish don’t want to feed, then you can just sit there and enjoy being at one with nature. There is so much more to fishing than simply catching fish

Good luck and tight lines!




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