Pike Fishing

Pike Fishing at St Mary's Angling Club

There are hard fighting specimen Pike in both lochs with all weight classes being evident. We had a tagging project which ran since 2005 which has given us a wealth of information on the Pike population and their habits.

One of our pike on a New Year trip (2nd Jan 2006) was noted as travelling 2 miles in 23 hours, proof that this girl is not yet ready for the sedentary lifestyle!

If you catch a tagged Pike please assist us by placing a return on our submission form stating Tag number, where and when caught, weight of fish, bait used and any distinguishing marks or abnormalities.

All anglers should submit a return of Pike caught (tagged or not) by sending details of your catch via the website or submission form (https://forms.gle/S7TYAe8Yn99zgXpr6).

All types of dead bait are effective, usually ledgered, popped up or trolled from a boat. Fly and artificial lures work best from May – September and “Bulldawg” type lures, jelly replicants, and Rapalas trolled from a boat can bring good results.

The Pike in the lochs are under very light angling pressure to date (2010) the average angling sessions per week is 7 sessions per week over both lochs so you can understand when we say whilst much good fish have been caught, there is much more to come! If you are fortunate enough to be in the right place when they are feeding its possible to land 4 or 5 in a session.

There will be a large number of Pike in both lochs that have never seen the lochside banks!

There is a tendency these days to go for the easy option such as put and take Rainbow Trout as opposed to wild Trout fishing. Worryingly this trend appears to have migrated to Pike fishing where overstocking with Pike and artificial feeding are used to force the Pike to attain bigger weights in a shorter time.

You probably won't blank at these engineered ponds but you won't get any righteous satisfaction either. Looking to fill your photo album with soft flabby twenties then go to one of these "Plastic" Pike fisheries.

You won't find any of that here, the Pike is truly wild just as mother nature intended and they grow into very heavy specimens without any interference from us.

It is quite rare to land any Pike below 5lbs in weight on St Mary's, rather more common on the smaller Loch o the Lowes. The surface has not yet been scratched as regards Pike fishing and given the reports from some anglers of one's that have got away, there are some very heavy Pike out there!

Information gleaned from our tagging project has proven that our Pike population regularly circle the lochs, on their forays and travel significant distances in search of food.

There are very few areas in which Pike have not been caught, excepting the areas of the loch which are extremely deep (see bathymetrical map).

However, it is important to be realistic a blank day is always a possibility!

The following legislation from the Scottish Parliament live-baiting is now prohibited.

The amended rules for lure fishing are as follows from 1st April to the 30th September any legal lure anywhere on the lochs. From the 1st of October until the 31st March lure fishing is restricted to the area 50yds above the entrance of the Megget to the top of the loch and the loch o the Lowes. That means no lure fishing at the Megget point and downwards to the dam (see map). Furthermore during this period (the Trout close season) lures are restricted to legal lures above 5 inches in length.

Spinning/lure fishing restricted to the darker shaded area during the Trout close season.

Please study the bathymetrical map as some areas are extremely deep a very short distance from the bank! Wading should only be done whilst exercising great care.

The average weight of Pike caught in (2007) was 11lbs 9oz (derived from angler catch returns within our tagging project) and we have fish in the mid-twenty regions most years. The heaviest Pike to date (2008) currently stands at 24lbs 13oz.

All Pike must be returned to the Loch unharmed!

We have now adopted the PAC code of conduct click here to read it now. You do not need to slavishly follow this doctrine but the movement towards the policy should be seen as the natural way to progress your Pike fishing.

If you are new to Pike fishing please mention this when booking, we can usually arrange for a mentor to be close to assist you. Please read the code of conduct (link above) to see the standard of angling required on our lochs.

Our Pike in the lochs are essentially our future, accordingly, careless handling of our Pike is viewed seriously!

We maintain close links with RA52 the Ayrshire Region of the Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain and would encourage all Pike anglers to join this organisation.

Please feel free to ask any of the local anglers for advice, we are a friendly bunch and would like nothing more than for you to have a successful day.

For more information on our tagging project or for up to date information on how the lochs are fishing please see our latest Blog.

ANGLERS MUST OBTAIN A PERMIT BEFORE COMMENCING TO FISH UNLESS A PRIOR ARRANGEMENT HAS BEEN MADE BY PHONING OUR LOCHKEEPER -

Mobile: 07412659569 (John) / 07414591455 (Karren)

Email: stmaryslochanglingclub@yahoo.com