The mighty river Trent is steeped in match fishing history and has been a river which has hosted many of the top UK events for decades. It’s been long associated with fish of all species and quite understandably the matches held on this river tend to grab the headlines with nets of bream and barbel. However, over the past couple of years we have seen a large amount of match anglers targeting small fish as the larger fish can be somewhat unpredictable especially if you are wanting to formulate a team plan or if you are trying to achieve a ‘steady’ section placing as you would if you were fishing a league. As on many rivers, targeting small can usually be best by using float fishing techniques but what happens if the conditions won’t let you present a float properly or if it was a feeder only event? Today we’ve brought you along to Laughterton which is a very well known match stretch of this tidal river just downstream of Dunham bridge to demonstrate a great way of catching small fish on the feeder.

Jamie likes to target the reliable small fish on the Trent

This stretch of the tidal part of the Trent is extremely popular with matchmen and the matches here have been won with barbel, bream and large nets of small fish but as with any river, each of these species prefers to live in certain areas of the river and as a match angler it’s often a case of knowing what species your best targeting from each given peg. Having said that, big fish on rivers are notoriously unpredictable so even if you draw one of the noted ‘hotspots’ there’s no guarantee that the big fish will feed!

A big tidal skimmer, but it's a risk to target them!

What is more predictable, or maybe better referred to as reliable, are the roach, dace and perch that live along this stretch. These fish can often be caught from most of the pegs so it’s a great idea to have a good understanding of how these fish feed and the best way to target them. As with a lot of our fishing recently, a lot of what we apply in our feeder fishing has been learnt from catching fish on float tactics and if your thinking about targeting fish like this I believe that the approach can be broken down into three simple parts.