Jeremy Weitz 1lb 3oz dace

SIXTY-one- year-old Jeremy Weitz was left stunned when fishing a Southern chalk stream he encountered the biggest dace he has ever seen – a superb 1lb 3oz specimen.

The Bournemouth rod described the fish as ‘truly massive’ as he measured it in at a staggering 14-inches long and was thinking he may have shattered the 1lb 5oz record set by Simon Ashton in 2002 on the River Wear – but sadly was just 2oz short.

An ecstatic Jeremy told Angling Times:

“On the day I really didn’t fancy my chances as the recent rainfall had the river running very high.

“I caught fish steadily all day in the end but despite catching some nice roach to 1lb 4oz – this dace was a completely different class.

“I’ve had dace to 1lb 1oz from the Southern rivers in the past and they usually are around 13-inches long so I was thinking this fish was bigger than it eventually weighed to be honest.”

Identification of dace, however, can be difficult, so we spoke to the Environment Agencies National Fish Farm Manager, Alan Henshaw, for some verification, he said:

“We agree this looks like a true dace from the lateral line counts, the head and the concave dorsal.

“It is very difficult to be 100%, however, without being able to see all the fins clearly.

“Dace can hybridise with chub, roach and ide. Identifying hybrids is also difficult unless you use Genetic techniques.”

The fish, which most believe to be a true monster dace was caught on a paternostered piece of  sweetcorn on a size 12 wide gape hook tied to 3lb mainline, with a 7gm bomb and ½ ounce quiver tip for sensitive bite indication.