The club has been investigating the benefits of floating islands for Horseshoe Lake. The head bailiff, Ray Torrington said, ‘Fish tend to congregate around safe areas with abundant food, and at Horseshoe this is the reed beds by peg 9 and peg 35. This gives these pegs an advantage over others on some days'
In discussion with Environment Agency specialists and the Institute of Fishery Management they have recommended ‘floating islands’ as way to spread the fish out across the entire lake’.
The islands are made of buoyant pipework frame with a mesh screen that keeps the plant roots in the water.. The specialist aquatic plants have been grown in coir mats supplied by Water-Lines Solutions of Barnwell.
They are tethered to the lake bed in a fixed position to provide a safe sheltered area for fish. Over time the roots of the plants will grow into the water and provide a home for invertebrates and other life that fish feed on. Fish will spawn in these areas with eggs attaching to the roots and young fry and fish will also inhabit these areas.
Many other fisheries have used these islands and they are a tried and tested method to provide fish with additional places of safety to congregate and feed which provides anglers with more fish catching opportunities.
At the moment they are moored at peg 6 & 7 and will be deployed to the final locations shortly. It is aimed to attach one to the railway bank, probably opposite peg 7. The other three will be liked together and anchored mid lake around peg 30.
Q What size are these new islands?
A 3m long x 2m wide and they are partially submerged so the plant roots are in the water.
Q How close can I fish to them?
A You can fish as close as you can reach with a feeder; they will probably be beyond most pole lengths. Please try and avoid hitting the island flotation ring with heavy feeders. Also please avoid landing on the island. Hook lengths will tear through the supporting netting the plants rest on, and also shred the plant foliage.
Q If the lake floods what will happen to the islands?
A The islands have been designed to rise and fall with the water level in the lake.
Q Can a fish I hook wrap itself around the anchor points?
A Yes it can, once they know this is possible. You will have to steer them away from the island once you hook them, the same as you do know for the other snags in the lake.