Connor Wiley had a real battle on his hands after hooking this estimated 50 lb sturgeon on light float tackle.
The 28-year-old children’s support worker from Bedworth was seeking small carp and bream when he hooked the giant at nearby day ticket Hawkesbury Fishery, in Warwickshire.
Connor explained: “It was caught last year at 48 lb, but I couldn’t find any scales big enough to even attempt to weigh it.
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“It came after my last cast of the evening, at around 7.45pm. My girlfriend had just turned up, and I normally let her have a go while I pack up and drink beer.
“I put my float about 2 ft to the left of my peg, just under a little tree, to present a little bit of bread where I’d had just a carp and a bream.
“Within seconds, the float flew and the hooked fish created a big wave. I thought I was into a PB carp. I shouted over to my mate, Sam: ‘I think we are gonna need the scales for this one.’
“Sam brought them over, along with his large landing net. We didn’t even know that there was a sturgeon in the pool.
“After about ten minutes we saw the tail end of the fish and we were shocked. Everyone around the pool was watching me battle a sturgeon, hooked on a size 14 barbless hook and 6 lb line.
“It took me over to some lilies, and I thought that was the end of it, as it felt like a dead weight. But I walked back and it came free.
“After a 40-minute battle, we knew that there was no chance of landing it in the net, so I took my shoes and socks off and went into the pool.
“I only started fishing again about three weeks ago, and was after a PB carp, my biggest being 15 lb, which I caught some ten years ago,” added Connor.
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Running from 1964 until 2020, Angler's Mail was the UK's leading weekly magazine devoted to coarse fishing, telling readers everything they needed to know about which fish to catch, where to catch them, and what kit they needed to do it. Now, loads of the magazine's expert advice can be found on Advnture.com, as a helpful resource for angling newcomers and experts alike.