WITH settled conditions, shore sport is relatively quiet during daylight hours, with flatties and small whiting and coalfish making up the majority of catches.
Few cod have been reported in the south of the region with the better results again mainly north of Seaham, though they have not been evident in any great numbers here either, with the best catches coming from the rock edge marks after dark and from the rivers Wear and Tyne.
Down at Hartlepool and along the Durham beaches, a slight bit of surf running after dark has made a big improvement, with large numbers of size whiting and some big winter dabs moving inshore, and many anglers continue to report double-figure mixed bags.
Those anglers who can cast the distance over the sandbars have reported the odd cod around the 4lb mark.
Match anglers have mainly headed for the region’s rivers in the recent calm seas for mixed bags of whiting, coalfish, flounders, with the odd smaller cod as a bonus.
North of the Tyne, Blyth beach is always a popular venue for similar bags, with whiting often the main species. There have been a few decent match-winning bags, however, for those in the right place at the right time. A cod of 10lb 4oz taken by P Embelton won the Northumbrian Open. D Swan had the heaviest bag, with six for 11lb 13oz.
The last Ryhope match saw 64 fishing with 30 weighing in cod, whiting and flounders, with the better bags coming from the Tyne, where Barrie Stowells won with two cod and two flounders for 3.82kg. Barrie cleaned up by taking the h.s.f. with a cod of 1.23kg, and the h.s.flatfish with a super flounder of 0.89kg (2lb).
Bill Bell was second with six whiting for and one flounder for 1.74kg, Lee Burton had six whiting for 1.60kg and Matthew Winn was top junior and well up the weights with six whiting for 1.26kg.
Newbiggin AC had a good weigh-in for their last match with 20 out of 29 landing 26 whiting, 22 cod, four flounders and a single dab for 59lb 7oz.
John Bell had four cod for 7lb 11oz from Bondi Carrs, ahead of Anthony Eke with four for 5lb 14oz from Dulce Carrs. Joe Lindsay had the best with one of 4lb 1oz from the Beacons.
Barry Smith won a Blyth match at Amble with two cod for 7lb 8oz, best 4lb 9oz, ahead of Nigel Howitt with three for 7lb. Alan Naisby won a Bedlington Station match with 9lb 11oz, best 2lb 2oz, followed by Chris Potts with 9lb 2oz.
Geoff King had two cod for 9lb 3oz, best 6lb 9oz, to win a Northumberland Sea League match at Limpet Rocks, which saw 21 out of 30 weigh in 48 fish for 58lb 2oz.
Ken Hill won a Tynemouth match with a mixed bag of whiting and flounders for 6lb 5oz from Blyth.
Andy Stanford won a Seaton Sluice match with four for 4lb 13oz from Blyth.