With the end of the Wandle coarse angling season just weeks away, we’re looking ahead to spawning time and ways to improve the populations of coarse fish in the river.

The Wandle Roach Project
Roach board at Shepley Mill

Last year’s trial of the roach boards – our first attempt to replicate the very successful Avon Roach Project – met with mixed success and didn’t quite live up to our expectations.

The most likely reasons for the slightly disappointing performance were our choice of sites and the netting used to replicate the weed favoured by roach for spawning.  Last year we used Christmas tree netting (which was probably too fine and buoyant) whilst the guys running the Avon project use old keepnet mesh.  The locations where we float the boards in the river is easy to change, but we need your help with the netting.

This year we want to refurbish the boards with strips of keepnet mesh, just like the Avon project.

So if you find mice have eaten holes in your keepnet, or if you’ve ripped the bottom out of it in your swim, please don’t throw your net away.  Send me an email and I’ll arrange for it to be collected.

Picture of old keepnets
We need your old keepnets.

Once we’ve collected as much of your old netting as possible, we’ll recycle it into a fine substitute for the willow moss that Mrs Roach favours as a bed for her eggs.  And with luck and your help, next year we will have increased the number of roach in our wonderful river.

Many thanks and tight lines for the rest of the season!

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