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Edible Freshwater Fish (create a list please)

spudhead
by spudhead
Hi Everyone,

This is my first post here, so apologies if this sounds a bit simple.

I'm thinking about catching some freshwater fish to eat.
(I'm a beginner at that too)

I'm wondering, apart from the obvious fly fishing for trout, was is edible in our UK canals, pools and rivers.

I've read about Pike in another post. So thanks for that.

I'm interested in what I can catch locally without paying to go to one of the trout farm in my area. Free is always best


Feel free to create a list. Thanks
last edited on
quixote_1
#1
by quixote_1
There are a lot of technically edible fish in lochs & rivers. I'm not a coarse fisherman, so I wouldn't have any idea as to whether it's acceptable to remove them though. Especially in the case of managed fisheries. However, to answer your question literally, the most commonly eaten fish are..................

Bream
Carp
Perch
Pike
Zander
Salmon
Trout
Grayling
Seatrout
Eels......................all edible (and quite delicious, from all accounts.)

Barbel
Tench
Chubb..................I've been told are completely inedible (not poisonous, just unpleasant)

Other species (roach, dace, rudd, etc) I can't help with, I'm afraid.................
spudhead
#2
by spudhead
thanks for the quick reply quixote_1

I've just read somewhere that you need a licence for freshwater fishing.

Is that true for all freshwater fishing?
Even trapping eels in a stream ?
Celtic Mike
#3
by Celtic Mike
You will need a rod license to fish on any fresh water and in addition you may well need another license to fish on rivers and certainly canals if there are established fishing rights. If you fish on a stream it may well be privately owned so again you would need a licence or permit or you would be poaching.

Its always best to ask first to make sure.
Moose
#4
by Moose
Just to add, having a licence doesn't necessarily entitle you to remove fish from a body of water. Where I live, I have an Environment Agency licence and a licence to fish the waters belonging to the district's waters, but am only allowed to remove Pike up to 6lb, Zander, and what the association classes as game fish (brown trout, rainbow trout and salmon - they don't class grayling as a game fish).

Such a shame, as the perch and bream fishing here is good!
There are only 10 types of people in the world - those who understand binary, and those who don't.
KEITH BROWN
#5
by KEITH BROWN
I can recommend Pike and Perch from a clean water, for example at my back gate is the Bridgewater Canal, the water quality in the cut has improved over the last decade but still I would not eat any catch from it.
You have to seek clean bodies of water such as the Lochs in Scotland or the Lake District, I’ve eaten Perch as a lad but would not do so now purely for conservation reasons, i.e. let them grow bigger.
Pike I still eat, only up to eight pounds in weight, anything larger tends to be tougher.
doniv
#6
by doniv
I think everyone should be Forced to eat a bream - just so we can get rid of this Myth that they're edible

You may not actually die but they are truly foul
'Tis the time's plague, when madmen lead the blind. - Shakespear - King Lear
quixote_1
#7
by quixote_1
Hmmm, interesting! I was always under the impression that they were quite nice. Maybe I'm getting mixed up with sea bream?
Mart
#8
by Mart
I have a recipe for a river fish stew that calls amongst other things for a few small tench. Anyone ever eaten a tench ?
Oneforthepot
#9
by Oneforthepot
My fishmonger sells freshwater bream - and says they're vile - but they still sell.

Gudgeon are really good prepared like sardines.

Zander are as close to cod as you'll find unless you happen upon burbot ( now extinct in this country ).

Crucian carp are ok - bony but the bones are thick and solid - easy to pick out, what I usualy end up with is bizzarre crucian/goldfish hybrids.

Orfe/ide are supposed to be very good.

I've got a freshwater fish book ( long out of print ) which reviews the eating qualities of the fish. Did you know sticklebacks used to be collected and rendered for oil?
fungi2bwith
#10
by fungi2bwith
I have eaten most freshwater fish (but not chub, barbel, or tench) and think they are all worthwhile. However, they are very variable and this is probably due to water quality. I have seen lots of advice on eating only those from flowing water and this is good advice but the water quality isn't always obvious and varies throughout the year. Therefore I suggest you should not give up on a species before trying several different venues (and cooking methods).

For example I have eaten lots of freshwater eel but by far the best were a couple I caught from Lake Windemere. Probably the best tasting course fish in my opinion is Perch.

One word of warning there has been a lot of reports in the Angling press on Eastern Europeans taking lots of fish for the table and this has led to a number of over reactions from other fisherman. So I suggest only a few fish are taken and it is done discreetly (and within the local by-laws).
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