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Discussion Starter #1
I am sure many of you will be appalled by this but here goes...

I have always been intrigued by the idea of fish just "not biting" ie fish being in the area of the boat but not interested in the bait/lure. I was also interested in just how different fish approach the line, do they attack the bait or do they come in for a look and then get stuck in? So I made an underwater video camera which i lower to the bottom and have a small screen in the boat to view the feed, the results are amazing!

First time I lowered it down the fishfinder was showing a few good results from the bottom and sure enough there was a shoal of pollack, not thick but plenty of them, I picked up one of the other guys lines on the screen and watched as a few pollack gathered round and instead of hitting it straight away they swam around the bait and eventually one of about 5 surrounding it took the bait (lugworm).

After that the fish hung around, a few cod appeared and we took a nice codling but it was by no means prolific. It was frustrating to know all those fish were down there but just not taking anything and generally seemed uninterested.

The camera is small and i disguised it with seaweed so i dont think it spooked them so either we are pathetic fishermen (couldnt be possible!) or at certain times of the day, this was this morning, in certain light etc the fish dont want to know. All these things we knew already I hear you say but its nice to have them confirmed I reckon.

On a non-fishing front its amazing to see whats its like 70-100 foot down, sea urchins, starfish, crabs, lobsters. As I was watching I saw a gannet dive about 10 foot from the boat then it appeared on the screen at a depth of 78ft. Excellent viewing!

I am going to rig up a way of recording the feed so I should hope to post a short video clip at some stage to give you guys a look!

Ryan
 
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Sounds cool if you can get a clip on here. Would be good if you could keep up the 'experiment' over a length of time/trips.
 

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ah! thought that might have been what u needed! would be great to see the vids unless u have a laptop with AV in to make it easy it could be a bit of a pain, unless u could make a video of the monitor
 
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good stuff keep us posted.
could put some theorys out the window /dawn is ment to be good time for fishing ,i was out sat morning loads of fish on the finder just wernt eating. :)
 

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We often take it for granted that a bait presented under the nose of a fish will result in a hook up. If we don't get a bite we presume we are using the wrong bait and promply change. If you are not hungry you don't eat, if you have a full stomach you stop eating. Fish are just the same.
This is my excuse for blanking anyway. :D
Great experiment m8.
 

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good idea m8 might try something the same . :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I made mine for about 30 quid with bits from maplin and bought a cheapo screen from ebay, the one from the US looks excellent but you would be a bit gutted if it caught up in weed or worse still a big conger came in for a closer look and liked what it saw!
 

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thanks m8 will look into it
 

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The cable the camera hangs on is either steel or kevlar armoured stuff, they have a lot bigger tothy critters in the States than we have with the majority being pellagic they go for moving targets, I havm't heard of anyone over there loosing a camera. Used sensibly in conjunction with the sounder you will no catch rocks with it. You cannot move fast when you have it down so you should see any obstructions before you hit them.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I have yet to rig up some kit to record from the camera but I have a great story...

Tonight I was out and had the camera down in about 50ft over some roughish ground, the other guys in the boat were catching nice codling to about 4-5lb using baited cod feathers.

As I am watching the cod on the camera the screen goes blank - first i think water has got into the camera and its good night vienna, but I could still see something it just wasnt the bottom. First thought was a nice cod or perhaps a conger had swallowed it, then we noticed some suckers on the lens so I start to pull it up and get it to the surface and an octopus was wrapped around it!! I hauled into the boat and took a photo with the phone (attached).

It was about the size of a fist and kept changing colour, we had a good look at it and although im quite partial to Calamari (im sure octopus and squid would taste the same) we decided to let him go and he swam away perfectly.

Things like that really appeal to me, the chance of catching something totally unexpected!!
 

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I have a dvd from an faroes based company who sell computer controlled jigging reels for commercial fishing boats.
They attatched a camera to the line and sent the line down to 100 fathoms and you can see the cod and blackjacks hitting the lures as the reel jigs them. From the dvd i observed several fish not interested; swimming by. The fish that are hooked come in and hit the lures from off camera. BANG!! and the bait is gone.. lol

Also remember watching a series on sky ages ago called "charlie whites fishing machine" or something similar. The programmes i saw were all based in canada fishing for salmon. The guy had cameras on his down rigger leads so he could watch these 50lb salmon nail his sprat bait. Amaizing stuff.

Great idea to have a play around with. I'd be facinated on any updates as i'm sure many others would.

SS
 

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I made mine for about 30 quid with bits from maplin and bought a cheapo screen from ebay, the one from the US looks excellent but you would be a bit gutted if it caught up in weed or worse still a big conger came in for a closer look and liked what it saw!
Could you let us know what parts you used and how you made it.

Cheers
Alan
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Been using this all this season - unfortunately I havent bought any kit to record the footage yet.

Firstly the important part - you would be amazed at how many times you present a lure or bait to a fish and it just swims on past without taking any notice, it has proved to me that you need to study your mark and know when the fish go on and off the feed - I dont have any concrete methodology here - every mark I fish behaves differently with fish feeding at different times, it does help with figuring out where you should be in what state of the tide. Remember though that I have a camera down with lights on it which may or may not change the habits of the fish.

A moving bait/lure seems to almost annoy the fish so much so it has to come and investigate.

When fishing wrecks the bigger fish, contrary to what you might think, seem rather lazy and its the smaller more agile fish which fight to hit the bait. Incidentally its good to see if wrecks are covered in nets.

My use of it is tempered somewhat by the fact that it might put the fish off, also you can only really use it at anchor as on the drift there is a chance of it getting snagged.

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The easist way to make one is to buy a cheap tft screen from ebay - these are all 12v so can be wired direct to the boat power and also buy one of the underwater cameras from ebay, I use this one with no problems but when I bought it it came from the UK.

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Underwater-Color-Camera-w-60-feet-Cable-NEW-ITEM_W0QQitemZ220049652759QQihZ012QQcategoryZ15263QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Really all you need is a watertight casing and a camera lens in it, you can buy these parts in maplin just look at

http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=98256&criteria=camera&doy=20m11

If you really want to get into it then have a look here

http://techreport.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=31609

this is what I am making this winter

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All I would add is that like everything else this will not improve your fishing, if anything you are messing around with the camera so you dont put as much effort into fishing - it does however help you understand your marks, if you can get this info from an old boy sitting in the pub then its much easier to do that!!

Ryan
 

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Hi Ryan. I'd love to try that when fishing for blues you could maybe suspend the camera on a small bouy then a trace to the bait. There is usully pretty good vis out west.
 
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I have one of those ebay cameras but I am having truble sourcing the connections for the other end to fit my LCD tv. I'll have to have a look in maplins but most of the wrecks and ground I fish are well over 60ft, do you know if it is possible to extend the cable?
 

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I have one of those ebay cameras but I am having truble sourcing the connections for the other end to fit my LCD tv. I'll have to have a look in maplins but most of the wrecks and ground I fish are well over 60ft, do you know if it is possible to extend the cable?
What sort of connection do you need for your LCD tv ?.
Any connection would have to be waterproof. Heatshrink tube over the connections might do it.

Alan
 
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