Like anything left out in the sun, your carp care equipment can become incredibly hot during the summer months. If you’re lucky enough to bag a few carp during a heatwave, it’s vital that you think ahead when bringing them up onto the bank.
Carp are delicate creatures. Whilst they’re probably already suffering from lower oxygen levels due to the hot weather, the last thing you want to do is to lay them down on a carp cradle that’s been baking in the sun all day.
Here are a few tips to ensure that you take extra care for carp in hot conditions.
Make sure you’ve got all of your gear ready before bringing a carp onto the bank. This includes your mat, scales photography equipment too. It’s important that you minimise the time that the fish is out of the water.
Bing prepared and having everything to hand will make the weighing and photography process much quicker. The last thing you want is a carp lying in direct sunlight whilst you rummage through your rucksack for your gear!
Wet your mat and sling for every carp
Wet your sling unhooking mat or cradle with fresh lake water before placing the carp on it. Mats can become extremely hot when left outside in the sun. If you can, it pays to leave your mat and sling in a shaded spot between fish so that they don’t get too hot.
Use fresh lake water every time
Never use lake water that has been sitting in a bucket. Again, this can heat up dramatically over time if left out in the sun. Always fill up a fresh bucket prior to lifting your carp onto the bank.
Minimise retention time
Minimise your retention of carp in hot weather. In most cases though, just don’t to it unless you really need to. Retention slings tend to keep carp in the upper layers, often in direct sunlight. If you really need to retain a carp, try to find shade if possible.
Retaining carp in extreme heat is frowned upon and many fishery owners are starting to clamp down on it which is good to see.
Return the carp as quickly as possible
Whilst it can be tempting to get the perfect catch shot from every angle, fish safety needs to come first. In hot weather, try to minimise the carp’s time on the bank. Weight it, take a few photos holding it and send it back, ready to fight another day!
Soaking up the rays whilst fishing can be great. It’s even better if you manage to bag a carp too, whilst it can be tricky.
If you are lucky enough to catch, just remember these tips and take a few extra steps to keep the carp safe in the heat.
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