Thursday, April 28, 2011

Unbelievable Catches by RI CAG Member

Brad Trouve, one of our most experienced and knowledgeable carp fishermen in RI and a long time member of the RI CAG, had an unbelievable week. He landed some of the most usual koi I have ever seen. In addition, he also caught a 29.7 lb. common. This is one of the biggest commons ever landed in the state and is just a few pounds shy of the record. It just goes to show some of the terrific carp fishing that RI has to offer. Simply fantastic and congratulations, Brad.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tips for Beginners

From the e-mail questions I am getting, there seems to be lots of beginners out trying but few are catching. Realize that this is a very difficult fish to catch on rod and reel. Even experienced carpers sometimes spend hours trying to catch just one fish and we do black occasionally. Here are some tips that might help you to get that first one.
1. Pick a known spot that has a lot of them rather than a few big ones. Prebait several spots within that one pond or lake. Try to find spots with structure like trees in the water, dropoffs, or sandbars. More fish will hang around this structure than in open, desert like bottoms. Stick to these spots and keep going back, baiting every time you go. Don't make the mistake of jumping from pond to pond.
2. Try one spot for an hour to an hour and a half. Move on to a different location if nothing.
3. Use corn and prebait with corn (non trout stocked areas). Sweet corn is very effective on the hair rig or even just on the hook.
4. Fish the right times. Mornings and evenings are always best.
5. Try to tag along with an experienced carper or attend a fish-in. You will learn more in one hour with an experienced fishermen than you will learn in 6 hours on the Internet.

Here is a list of some real good beginner locations to fish in RI and MA: Blackstone Canal in Lincoln, Scotts Pond in Lincoln, River Bend Farm Pond in Uxbridge, MA, Warwick Pond, Brickyard Pond in Barrington (trout stocked), Spectackle Lake in Cranston and Lake Mashapaug in Cranston. None of these places have real large fish, but they all have a lot of fish.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Heavyweights Hitting at Night

I spent several nights fishing after dark this week looking for a big one. Like many other large fish, big carp are wary creatures and generally go on the prowl at night. In RI a big carp is considered 20 lbs. or more. After landing several fish in the 15-18 lb. range in the last few nights, I finally hit my first 20 lber. of the new year. Got it on banana flavored maize, a hot flavor at this time of year. Some of the biggest carp of the year are caught at this time since they are prespawn fish and are loaded with eggs making them very heavy. The photo at the right is an 18 lber. The 20 was landed a while later, but heavy rains prevented me from snapping a photo.

Monday, April 11, 2011

100th Carp of 2011

Got my 100th carp of the new year today on this warm day in which the fish were active. It is the earliest I have ever landed my hundredth fish. Most of them have been mirrors and this 8-9 lb. fish was a mirror too.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Two Blogs= 100,000 Hits

I began writing two blogs about two years ago. Today, those two websites logged a combined 100,000 hits. One blog,, was started as just a local website that would give RI fishermen tips and ideas for fishing for striped bass in the Ocean State from shore, boat and kayak. That site now attracts viewers from all over the East Coast and is one of the top striper fishing websites in New England in terms of popularity and volume. My other blog,, was started to inform RI fishermen about the great potential of this fishery. As the state chairman of the RI Carp Anglers (CAG) group, I used this vehicle to inform carp fishermen about European techniques, equipment and information about the CAG. The interesting thing about this blog is that it attracts viewers from all over North America as well as from the UK and other parts of Europe. It has worldwide appeal that I never anticipated. Thank you to all of my loyal readers for making these sites so popular. I will continue to bring you up-to-date and relevant information about carp fishing and striper fishing here in RI.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Hot Fishing is Here!

Good bye cold weather and north winds, hello warm weather and hot fishing. Yesterday afternoon I hit the hottest fishing day of the spring as I landed 10 carp up to 15 lbs. The warm day brought increased activity as I saw a lot of fish moving around, jumping and bubble trails. They were also actively hitting. Hot bait of the day was banana flavored maize which caught most of my larger fish. Sweet corn, when I could keep it on the hook (turtles pesty), took a lot of the smaller fish. With temperatures heading toward the sixties this weekend, the hot carp fishing should continue.

One more big tip here. I caught most of my fish around structure. Underwater drop offs, downed trees, tree trunks underwater. These are all tough places to fish, but spots that attract a lot of carp. Fish around structure if you are looking to increase your catches.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Out with Sweet Corn, In with Maize

The weather is warming up and that means all fish as well as turtles are getting more active. Active fish and turtles are just dying to get at that sweet corn. So, at this time of year, I dump the sweet corn in favor of more durable maize. There is nothing more irritating than to have your bait (sweet corn) stolen by clever pests who seem to take the bait without a twitch of the rod tip. Your unbaited hook can then be sitting on the bottom for a period of time and you have no clue the bait is gone. Darn sun turtles! It's not only turtles that are clever at stripping the delicate sweet corn. Horned pout are good at it, too, as are sunfish. So, to beat these pests I will resort to maize. Maize is a more durable corn. This is the stuff you get after boiling field corn. It is big and it's hard, making it difficult to pry off the hair (though snapping turtles can do it). I flavor it the same way described in an earlier post about sweet corn flavoring. In the last two days I had very good success with banana flavored maize. Pineapple also works well at this time. So, get the maize ready. With temperatures in the upper fifties and sixties on the way, it's time for the switch.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Thinking of Joining our Group?

If you fish the RI/MA area for carp or if you are thinking about getting into this exciting sport, consider joining our group. If you join the national Carp Anglers Group, you are automatically a member of our RI group. Membership in the national group is $25 a year and you can join online at You will see a "join CAG" link at the top of the home page. Here's what you get for your membership fee: 4 color magazines a year (North American Carp Angler), free membership to the state chapter, some discounts at online stores, tournaments run by the CAG, complete access to the CAG Forum, and a national and state network of fishermen who can provide you with valuable information. Think about joining. We have a friendly and knowledgeable group of carp fishermen here in RI, and we are always looking for more members.