Bryce in line for gold medal after landing conger
Such is the rarity of a 50lb conger in the shore fishing category, the British Conger Club rewards those who achieve the distinction with a gold medal.
Only recently, such a fish set a record for the Chesil Beach in Dorset, and last week another was taken from Mount Batten Breakwater on Plymouth Sound's eastern flank.
Captor of the 51lb 5oz specimen was dedicated shore conger hunter Mark Bryce, a member of Plymouth Rodbenders SAC, who has been seeking such a fish for over 20 years.
On the way to success he has had a number in the 40lb class but the really big one has until now eluded him.
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This year's Brixham Breakwater Conger Hunt is over the evening of Saturday, November 17, staged by Sean Piddington of Euro Angling. It will run from 5pm to 11pm.
The entry fee is £8 plus a £2 optional pool. As always this is a 'catch and release' competition, with stewards patrolling the venue with portable scales.
This breakwater produced a British record fish of just over 50lb some 30 years ago, and, while the potential is not what it once was, high-quality eels are a regular feature. It will probably take a conger in the 40lb-class to win the prize, which should be above £500.
A blue shark estimated by length and girth to weighing just less than 250lb was caught off Penzance.
If the weight is as stated, it exceeds the existing record for the blue of 218lb in place since 1959 to the credit of Looe, then Britain's shark angling capital.
This is, however, now flawed as at least four heavier examples judged to be so by a measurement formula have been caught, all but one off Cornwall. It may be time that Nigel Sutcliffe's 218lb fish from 1969 is retired and placed with other record fish that, due to conservation ideals, have also been beate,n with no further claims being allowed.
Eight species were registered in the sixth heat of the Shore League, and a total of 17 specimens were brought to the scales.
Defending champions Stonehouse A regained a six-point advantage over Roving Rods and the squad also went forward to the next round of the Plymouth Herald Knock-Out Competition by beating Plymouth A.
The other winners were Naval Stores, Kingsbridge SAC and Rodbenders.