Roach (Rutilus rutilus)

Roach are a very useful addition to the silver fish stock of any coarse fishery. They are distinguished from rudd by their silvery flanks (whereas rudd have more of a golden sheen) red eyes and position of pelvic fins (below the front of the dorsal fin). Their fins are also red although the degree of this can vary according to environmental conditions. Roach thrive in most types of habitats from still waters including lakes, gravel pits and canals to even faster moving waters such as streams and rivers. Prolific breeders they can soon become abundant in waters. Predominantly a bottom feeding species their diet consists of various types of insects, other invertebrates (caddis grub, nymphs and larvae) and weeds although they will also take worms. Maggots are widely regarded as the preferred bait for roach due in part to their resemblance to the invertebrate animals that form the major part of their diet. Roach can be caught by float-fishing, ledging or freelining. The British record for roach is 4lbs 4oz (2006).

Fair Fisheries roach are all farm-reared and not netted surplus fish from other still waters or fisheries. They are of a known age and not stunted as can be the case with netted sources. We typically have fish from 4-10” and occasionally some larger specimen fish. Since roach continue feeding at lower temperatures than carp etc. they are a very desirable winter fish as they provide sport at a time of year when catches of other coarse fish can be slow. The continuing and growing popularity of silver fish matches during the winter (as an alternative to carp fishing) attracts anglers to fisheries at a time of year when numbers decline. One of the top fish species in popularity a net of good sized roach can provide a satisfying day’s fishing.