Happy New Year to you all! We hope that 2024 brings you health and happiness and some great fishing trips. We are looking forward to welcoming our guests on our lakes in a few months’ time and meeting some new people, as well as catching up with some returning anglers.
The weather has been kind to us since January 1st and we started draining Lac Lucie more quickly, taking the boards out of the moine and watching each day as the water levels went down and exposed the bottom of the lake which has been great for us to see.
Cesar Constructions were back on site just after the new year and had started to build the banks up to strengthen the dam wall whilst they were waiting for the lake to be drained and netted so that they could resolve the valve issues.
By Monday 8th January we had managed to get the water levels just right for netting and although the temperatures were very low, the fish farmer agreed to come on Tuesday afternoon to get the job done. Some friends from a nearby lake came to help and Stuart and his son also helped with moving the fish from the bank to the lorry ready to take the fish round to Kingfisher for their holidays.
Jean-Noël and his colleague efficiently bought the large net into the bank with the fish getting more active as the came in closer. Leaving the carp until last all of the other fish were sorted into boxes, ready to be taken away with them. These were then weighed and put onto the back of the trailer to be taken to the lorry.
Then came the carp, 35 in total with the first netting consisting of 14 commons and 21 mirrors of various sizes. These were handled carefully, the larger ones into weigh slings and smaller ones into the plastic boxes. Again these were taken to the lorry and all put into huge water tanks on the back.
A second netting then took place to catch any that may have been missed first time round, we were not expecting much more but ended up with another large catfish and several babies and yet another 20 carp – 10 of each.
These 55 carp were then driven round to Kingfisher lake where they were then carefully unloaded and put into the water. As it was a cold day the fish were quite docile and all were transferred without any problems.
Once all of the fish were back in the water we all went back round to Lac Lucie as we knew that there was at least one more carp in the water. The young lad with Jean-Noël went back into the little patch of water that was left to track the carp down. A few minutes later he had caught another 9 carp (5 mirrors and 4 commons) which were then dutifully taken round to Kingfisher.
A good 4 hours work for everyone in very chilly conditions but all very efficient. We only weighed the one fish, a common at 51lb 6oz, which we thought was the biggest, as we were keen to get the job done and the fish safety was our priority. The majority of the fish appeared to be over 20lb, although there was one lovely little common at around 2lb which had great rounded shoulder and will be good to see in a few years time once it is grown up a bit.
There were no great suprises for us, apart from a 90lb catfish that hadn’t been caught since we have been here but it was good for us to see all the fish that we have in that lake and especially to see them all looking so strong and healthy.
The fish farmer has removed 3 large cats as well as numerous kittens, all weighing in at 175kg. We also had zander, perch, pike and numerous tiny roach.
The plan now is to get the new valve sorted and the lake works finished on Lac Lucie, hopefully in the next fortnight. We will then drain Kingfisher into Lac Lucie, net that and look at our total stock. We are fairly confident that we will need to invest in some new stock and will follow Jean-Noël’s advice regarding what we need. But don’t worry, all you cat lovers out there, we will be making sure that there is at least one catfish put back into Lucie.
Until next time, bonne journée….