Sea fishing in Looe

guest postSea fishing in Looe is a popular pastime and many people visit Looe to do just that.

If you enjoy your sea fishing then please leave Alan a comment via the comment form at the end of the article.

Just click the Read More link below for more details, pictures and a Pollock Fact File!

Read more about Sea fishing in Looe

Today’s blog post is from Alan Tennant, who in 1974 caught what turned out to be almost the largest shore caught Pollock from anywhere in the UK.

The enormous fish weighed in just 1oz shy of the record and netted Alan 15 minutes of fame via the Sea Angler, Anglers Mail and the News of the World no less!

The following words and magazine cover picture were supplied by Alan after which I’ve added a few facts about sea fishing in Looe and and the mighty fish – the Pollock.

Giant Pollock caught by Alan Tennant off the Banjo Pier

Alan Tennant in Looe with PollockThe photo on the front of the ‘Sea Angler’ magazine was taken by Mike Milman on the jetty at Port Wrinkle the morning after I caught the fish!

The giant pollock was caught between Christmas Day and New Year 1973 on the Banjo Pier.

It was a cold and windy night. The gate would be across these days detering anyone from accessing the pier but back in those days things were a little more relaxed.

After quite a fight I brought the fish to the pier steps where a plucky fellow “Erny Varco ” climbed down the steps to gaff the fish. He also dispatched the fish in a proper manor. Thanks again Erne. Hope I’ve spelt your name right?

12lb 10oz Pollock

The Pollock weighed in at 12-10oz which at the time (1974) was just 1oz under the national shore caught record!

Fishing gear

I caught the fish on an Aberdeen hook baited with a live sand eel dug from the Looe river bed (anyone reading this please don’t dig around moorings). The Pollock was weighed on the fish quay by Mr Brian Tudor, the then secretary of the Shark Angling Club of Great Britain, sadly no longer with us I believe. Brian was taken away from his pint in the Salutation Inn by my then wife Jean nee Ramsey to do the job! Thank you to both.

The picture n the magazine also appeared on the front cover of the Anglers Mail and in the News of the World supplement on the same page as Jacqueline Bisset, Johnny Mathis and Sophia Loren! A fishy tale I hear you say but quite true! My thanks go out to Mike Milman once again for taking the photo.

Alan Tennant

Fishy Fact File – The Pollock

The Pollock (Pollachius pollachius)Fishing for pollockA load of pollocks!
I say pollock, you say pollack – they’re pronounced the same.

The pollock is a marine fish (you probably knew this already) and has no barbel at the tip of its lower jaw. The lateral line has a sharp dip between first and second dorsal fins and a strong silver lateral line running down each side. Above the line is greening black whilst the belly is white. The fins are universally dark except for yellowish pelvic fins. It’s quite a handsome fish when pulled from the water.

Pollock can grow up to 3ft 6inches (1.07m) and can weigh up to 46lb (21kg).

They can be found down to a depth of 200m although the young fish live near the coast for up to three years before migrating to deeper water. On average they live between 40 and 100m.

Pollock are known as ‘whitefish’ and have a fairly strong flavour. As a result pollock are often used as a cheaper alternative to cod or haddock. Their flesh is greyish in colour so they are often sold as fresh fillets or in fish cakes, fish fingers, fish pies and even used to create imitation crab meat.

Pollock are good sport fish and strong fighters. If you catch a good sized fish you better hang on tight.

Their diet includes sand eels, sprats, herring, smaller cod like fish, wrasses, rocklings, blennies, squid, worms and large crustaceans.

Bait fishing, casting, jigging or trolling are all successful fishing methods. Baits and lures include squid, herring, clams, worms, smaller cod species, crabs, shrimp and prawns, diamond jigs, spoons, tub lures, spinners, plugs, flies and sand eels from Looe harbour!

In 2009 Sainsbury’s renamed pollock as ‘Colin’ in order to boost sales of the fish.

Basically their marketing department believed it sounded too much like the swear word *ollocks and felt this made shoppers embarrassed to ask for it. I know what I’d say to that… The name ‘Colin’ came from the French word for cooked pollock.

Next time you’re in the chippy try asking for a ‘colin and chips’ 🙂

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About iLoveLooe

Cornwall was always one of our dream places to live, so we upped sticks in 2007 and moved to Looe. I now run iLoveLooe.co.uk and various social media locations for Looe on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. Say 'Hi' sometime.