Rudd (Scardinius erythrophthalmus)

An underestimated species, rudd are a tough fish that are caught mainly in the summer months up in the water.  Unlike other silver fish such as bream and roach they don’t grow particularly big and typically are between 3oz and 12oz fish although the British record for this species is 4lbs 10oz caught in Northern Ireland in 2001.  Very similar in general appearance to roach their dorsal fin is set further back then a roach and their mouth is up-turned with the bottom jaw protruding upwards making it ideally suited for its’ surface feeding habits. Other features that distinguish it from roach are the more bronze appearance of its flanks and the fact that the fins are generally orange rather than red in colour.  Its iris is also a yellow orange colour unlike the roach which is red eyed.

Similar to roach and bream, rudd are a shoaling fish and tend to congregate with members of the same year class and if targeted a large weight can be amassed.  As rudd are adapted to be a surface feeder they will take insects from the surface as well as zooplankton and aquatic weed.  They spawn in April/May at a similar time to roach and as prolific breeders there can be a degree of hybridisation between the two species which can make it difficult to confidently identify specimens.

By purchasing farm produced fish you can guarantee that there will be no hybrids and that only true rudd are being stocked.  We spawn our rudd in early spring and rear them in the hatchery until large enough to be stocked outside in purpose built rearing pools for on- growing.  Harvested after 2 years the average rudd will be 5-6 inches and ready for stocking in fisheries.

A popular addition to any commercial fishery rudd are often caught during summer months when other species aren’t feeding.