Beara Baskers, Burgeoning Biomass, and Guinness of Course.

Ten meters off the point a large shoal of grey mullet finned and opened their collective mouths in unison, sieving plankton and other microscopic organisms from the rich productive waters of a special West Cork bay which over the last eight years has become very close to this writers heart. Loose feeding bread flake after about 10 minutes a number of the multitude proceeded to suck in Mr Brennan’s best, time to introduce my quill floated, 2BB shotted, size 10 round bend, bread flake carrying terminal tackle.

A nice Beara Peninsula grey mullet caught on bread flake.

No sooner had the float settled in the water when a large white shape resembling a bin liner appeared about 5 meters outside the mullet shoal. Becoming closer and larger suddenly white plastic transforms into a cavernous mouth, gill rakers and an extended bulbous nose, a whopping great basking shark not ten feet from my stance attracted by the same plankton rich waters loved by the mullet, who by their body language couldn’t care less about this 20 foot long interloper now entering their parlour. As if to prove this point down goes my float, a turn of the wrist, an explosion of spray and the drag sings on my Mitchell fixed spool. Where would you get it, playing an angry mullet in close proximity to a marine Goliath, awesome.

United Kingdom visitor Keith Kendall sports a grand jelly worm tempted pollack.

Such is fishing on the Beara, marine surprises piled on top of quality sea angling, they don’t happen every day but not a trip goes by without at least one David Attenborough moment. Certainly it’s not just the fishing that encourages tourists like Keith Kendall from the United Kingdom to undertake a marathon 36 hour round trip by boat and car to this far flung outpost of Ireland, but it helps. Inviting Keith to spend a day pollack and wrassing with us we had a great time encompassing bracing headland walks, rock hopping, a smattering of prime fish, all topped off with a few pints and a nice evening meal in O’Neill’s of Allihies.

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