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01 Jun 2017
by CARPology
15 of the most ridiculous rules in carp fishing
Be it no stalking, no maggots, no surface fishing or zero tolerance on your girlfriend joining you, here's 15, quite often, ridiculous fishery rules.

1 No zig rigs

Reason for the ban?
It would be easy to think this is one of those rules imposed just because it can be such a successful tactic, but there are other reasons for fisheries disliking Zigs, mainly being that the owner’s precious carp can become foul-hooked or trailing leads on long snapped off rigs.

Cool or bull?
With the popularity of Zigs in recent times it’s going to be hard to see many water’s depriving their customers of using the latest Zig Bug or adjustable float and perhaps rightly so.

2 Bait limits

Reason for the ban?
Believe it or not, but there are some fisheries where too much bait, or rather too much bait left uneaten by the fish can lead to problems with water quality. The consequence issue with water quality can then take an ill-effect on the fish stock.

Cool or bull?
If a fishery encounters the reasons above, it would seem more than sensible to impose a ban on certain baits that don’t easily breakdown. Healthy water and fish has to be the priority.

3 No stalking

Reason for the ban?
Sadly, time and time again anglers decide to go stalking carp part way through their session without reeling in their regular rods first. In some cases leaving rods unattended many yards away from their stalking location. This unsafe neglect of rods and trampling of bankside vegetation is normally the cause for this rule.

Cool or bull?
A massive part of a carpers armoury, we would always advise any angler to make the most of any stalking opportunity. So this rule really does spoil things a bit, although understandable when introduced due to anglers fishing unsafely.

4 No plastic baits

Reason for the ban?
The problem with plastic, imitation hookbaits baits is that should an angler crack-off and leave one attached to a rig out in the lake they can continue fishing indefinitely. Inevitably carp can still become hooked at some point even though they are not actually attached to an angler’s line. This can be extremely dangerous for the carp, as it could then become snagged if there’s a length of line still attached.

Cool or bull?
In lakes that hold a number of snags or contain beds of heavy weed that could pose fish trailing rigs a potentially fatal hazard, this rule can make some sense. Although pointless when other fish safety factors are not also in place.

5 No surface fishing

Reason for the ban?
Another rule that seems to come into place from a particular method dominating captures, angler’s unsafe set-up of tackle or both. Although the most common reason seems to generate from the use of the infamous Beachcaster Rig where a big sea fishing float and large hook are often used.

Cool or bull?
Again, when angler’s set-up their terminal tackle correctly, using a conventional controller float on one rod, poised to strike on the take, there really shouldn’t be a need for this kind of rule - full stop.

6 No maggots

Reason for the ban?
Yes, amazingly this rule is often introduced. In a lot of cases it comes down to complaints made by the majority of anglers regularly fishing a venue. These complaints normally stem from the carp becoming preoccupied with large amounts of maggot being introduced by a few anglers able to afford doing so.

Cool or bull?
No maggots allowed? You have to be kidding! How can you ban one of the oldest and most established fishing baits known to man? You can’t! Manage their use, yes, but ban? No way, that’s bull!

7 Barbless hooks only

Reason for the ban?
An extremely common rule that time and time again sparks a lengthy debate - in fact, we’ve actually got Kevin Nash and Dave Ellyatt debating it on page 11. The truth of the matter is that barbless hooks can give fisheries and their stock some protection from the mistakes we all make when learning to fish. The fish find them much easier to shed should they trail a rig or become snagged.

Cool or bull?
As we’ve said, it’s debatable subject and rule. Some will say you lose more fish, some will say you don’t. Either way, it’s a rule that’s very popular with tackle companies selling more barbless hooks than barbed each year.

8 Limited number of nights

Reason for the ban?
It only takes one ‘time bandit’ to start catching a few and this rule is normally imposed and commonly found within the rule book of syndicate and club waters. The idea of this bank-stay embargo is to provide all anglers with the same opportunity of finding a swim or getting in the going peg, but does it work?

Cool or bull?
This rule can often lead to other problems; such as anglers grouping up to rotate swims between them and is not a winner for us. Better vetting or management of angling numbers normally sees a more peaceful venue.

9 Shirts to be worn at all times

Reason for the ban?
Keep it covered up man! Yes, that’s right, there are fisheries out there that insist you keep a shirt on at all times. Reasons can stem from a club or venue’s history of angling being a gentleman’s sport for the posh to families visiting the lakes and not wishing to see some bare-chested carper to it simply not being a ‘very nice sight’ for the fishery owner.

Cool or bull?
This really does depend on which way you look at things, if you want to strut your stuff this rule will disappoint. We tend to think that hairy man-boobs are no substitute for a proper pair; so keeping ‘em covered is no bad thing.

10 No tin cans of any kind

Reason for the ban?
You can imagine a few rules being ignored before this one becomes imposed. Simply things like taking your rubbish home or using the bins provided. Yet, when winter arrives and the bankside foliage dies back, there’s normally a fair few tins or beer cans exposed.

Cool or bull?
Perhaps this isn’t the right venue for a baked-bean addict, but things like sweetcorn can always be emptied from the can prior to fishing. Much better than a swim full of rats or the sight of someone’s rubbish littering the bank.

11 Only green umbrellas to be used

Reason for the ban?
Perhaps a small misconception on a fishery owner’s part that any angler not using a green umbrella must therefore be inadequate or not of a suitable level of experience to fish their lake. Although in some cases there may be some truth in this theory, if not, its accuracy of grading an angler’s suitability by the colour of the brolly.

Cool or bull?
Well, we all have to start somewhere? When building up your gear, a top-notch shelter is probably a bit further down the list from rods and reels, but let’s face it, none of us want to be staring at a bright tent or brolly on the bank.

12 No cooking meals

Reason for the ban?
Well, if this fishery also included the ‘No wives or girlfriends’ rule (see Rule 13 to your right), a lot of anglers would go hungry and perhaps there’s a few whose health might benefit from fishing a lake like this?! This is yet another rule that comes from the small number of anglers that can’t resist lobbing rubbish over their shoulder instead of binning it - which, as always, ruins it for everyone.

Cool or bull?
Unless the fishery owns shares in the local take-away this rule seems a little extreme. Manage the litter louts yes, but prevent a carper from frying up a bacon-butty? No way, Jose!

13 No girlfriends or wives allowed

Reason for the ban?
What the hell happened to see this rule brought in?! We do know of someone who’s ‘other-half’ drove around the lake (wheel spinning and drifting) to the swim of said angler, prior to throwing his gear in the lake in a fit of rage! Beats finding your tea in the bin when you’re late home!

Cool or bull?
Well, there are probably some of you who you’d like to know where this lake is and find fishing a great escape from the missus. That said, fishing is a sport open to all and the inclusion of potential female anglers shouldn’t be discouraged.

14 No white t-shirts

Reason for the ban?
Simple: Persil don’t sponsor carp anglers! No, really, this is another rule that seems a little silly. Is there a listed subsection that details other shades, colours or patterns that are allowed? Probably not! Yet someone has obviously been offended by the fact an angler was wearing a white T-Shirt rather than looking like a tree.

Cool or bull?
Yes, okay, the last thing you need when perhaps stalking or fishing the margins is some tool standing over you in a bright T-Shirt, but if we’re all supposedly sheep following the same trends then maybe we should be wearing white?

15 Fishery boilies to be used only

Reason for the ban?
Some would argue this rule ensures that growing fish receive a quality bait, but the most likely reason for this rule is the money made from selling the bait. In some cases this doesn’t actually mean the fish are getting a rich feed, as to reduce cost, some venue’s own brand boilies don’t include these expensive ingredients.

Cool or bull?
Some anglers will like the convenience of buying bait on arrival, but it’s still hard to see how this rule benefits anyone too much. No doubt it reduces the amount of potential customers who’d like to choose their own bait.

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