Otters have been the cause of thousands of large and costly carp deaths across the country, many of which go un-mentioned and un-noticed but many more are the fish of dreams, the reasons behind us anglers joining clubs and doing what we do.
Though it seems the governing bodies have and will let our voices fall on death ears, the only thing we can do is continue to air our concerns and show the destruction that otters are having on our sport.
If you have seen an otter kill, report it here: http://carpfishinghub.co.uk/report-an-otter-kill/
Below is a map of all the confirmed otter kills reported to us so far, pictures of the destruction are further down.
Some of the victims
UK anglers have really responded to our advertising on this subject and kindly helped us spotting otter-kills across the country, so far more than 700 have been reported to us in little over a week (Feb 2014). Here’s a few of the pictures and stories we have been sent so far.
Bradley from Northants reported this glorious fully scaled mirror as ‘ottered’ in the Duston area of Northampton.
With several other good quality venues nearby including Duston reservoir, Gayton Marina, Meadow Lakes and Sharman road lakes and not to mention several miles of river known for its good head of carp, things are looking ominous for Northampton based anglers.
Mark Simmonds fishery was devastated by otters in Hampshire
105 of his 122 were either dead or dying thanks to attacks from otters. The total cost is believed to be around the £30,000 mark so not only has this caused a good fishery to lose its stock, it may also cost Mark his business and livelihood.
Richard from Blackburn’s local club water has been devastated by otters, he’s found and seen more than 6 dead carp on his rounds.
That many noticeable deaths is becoming more and more common, I bet there is at least half a dozen more that haven’t been reported/spotted.
James in Bedford took this pic, the last straw of 22 original fish that have been killed, not for food but for fun by otters.
The venue was full of original stock from back in the 80′s, thirty year old fish destroyed in less than 6 months by one otter.
Dan from Chelmsford in Essex spotted this kill.
The venue in question is the place where Dan and some celebrity anglers like Darrel Peck cut there teeth as young anglers, such a sad situation.
Noel from Exeter spotted this carp that has been savaged by an otter.
He commented “Darts Farm Fishery, near Exeter. This is a fenced venue but obviously not well enough. The carp was right next to the Wetlands Nature reserve bird hide. Probably the first time the general public who visit the hide daily have seen a carp. And they probably have no idea how it got there or what killed it. They probably think it was anglers.”
What can you do about it?
Apart from taking a baseball bat to one if you see it, as an angler you must sign this petition against otter predation.
If you’re interested in the science and back-story behind the rise in otter populations, why they attack fish and what can be done to halt the growth, here’s some great further reading.
Otters: The Facts – http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/static/documents/Business/Otters_the_facts.pdf
John Wilson uncovers the cost of otters to fisheries – http://www.thepredationactiongroup.co.uk/predation_report2.html
Otters on Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otter
No-one likes to finish an article on a sour-note so heres something a bit more light-hearted, we all wish otters were off our backs but at least we are not baby seals: