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Lets take a look at the lesser weever. Eyes on the top of its head, venomous spines on first dorsal fin and on the gill cover, a nasty little fish to be handled with care. Not a fish you may want to catch intentionally, unless you are species hunting, when it becomes as important as any other species.

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The weever has a habit of lying partially buried in the sand, with just the top of its head and that black dorsal fin exposed. Just waiting to be tread upon by the unwary.

Most of you will have encountered one from time to time, but could you go out and target one intentionally? Hopefully yes.

First you need to find a venue where weevers are plentiful. I can't help you with that except suffice to say that the only place I know which has a large population is West Bay harbour, in the warmer months. I fish right at the start of the Jurassic pier, by the life buoy, opposite the slipway. Just about the first available spot on the pier.

Second you need to employ the correct tactics. Weevers will readily take fish baits, so small strips of mackerel, either as baited sabikis, or a two hook flapper will do the business. Hooks mist be small and sharp. I like the new Yuki aberdeens from Veals which are extremely small for their stated size, and a number six is perfect. Grasp the shank of the hook with forceps and shake the fish off. There is no need to touch it.

Third you need to get the timing right. Whereas they can be caught at any stage of tide, at any time of day, after dark on a rising tide is best. This is when the weevers come out of hiding and start swimming around.

Finally, and this is the most important, you need to minimise bycatch. All those thousands of pout, tiny pollack, silver eels etc. are just waiting to muller your bait as soon as it gets anywhere near the bottom. The solution: fish on the top. Wind your gear in until you can see your baits just under the surface. If you use a headlamp you will see the weevers swimming around. They will readily come right to the surface and savage your baits. I have had over twenty in a session like this.

So there you are. All my weever knowledge. Hope it helps.
Good luck and happy hunting.
 

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Just to add a bit Phil - weevers take sabiki's and other small feathers very well when bounced along the bottom. I've caught them both from a boat and from the shore with this method. They also have a distinct liking for a fresh shrimp as I've often picked them up when using shrimp for bait. They are commonly found on shrimp grounds and i've caught loads in my shrimp net.

Just to confirm your comment on West Bay, I've actually caught them from the pier myself when visiting Dorset (great county for species).
 

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Thanks for putting this up Phil, great bit of information, just gotta get me butt in gear now and follow your instructions:thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:
 

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I followed the instructions last night on a very poor tide, tiny pout and pollack were there in abundance and this which was a surprise.

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At under 3" overall length it was the smallest I've seen.
 

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The weever fish is the very reason I tell my wife not to dip her toes into the sandy shore line without her sandals on, she's a Francophile and probably ate weever fish in France as an ingredient in bouillabaisse but she knows now why I'm so freaked out if I see her bare footed out in about a foot of water. Thank Christ we're not in Australia 'oh what a cute little octopus all blue like'
 

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Lets take a look at the lesser weever. Eyes on the top of its head, venomous spines on first dorsal fin and on the gill cover, a nasty little fish to be handled with care. Not a fish you may want to catch intentionally, unless you are species hunting, when it becomes as important as any other species.

View attachment 1193367

The weever has a habit of lying partially buried in the sand, with just the top of its head and that black dorsal fin exposed. Just waiting to be tread upon by the unwary.

Most of you will have encountered one from time to time, but could you go out and target one intentionally? Hopefully yes.
Grasp the shank of the hook with forceps and shake the fish off. There is no need to touch it.
Oh yes there is, doesn't really count unless you touch it ! :rolleyes:
:whistling:
 

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Seriously any tips for unhooking a lively weever ?, had a double header a couple of years ago, stressful for all.
 

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Seriously any tips for unhooking a lively weever ?, had a double header a couple of years ago, stressful for all.
I use my artery forceps and shake them off hook.
Meant to be a good skate bait.
 
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Seriously any tips for unhooking a lively weever ?, had a double header a couple of years ago, stressful for all.
A damp towel and forceps is the way !
I spent an afternoon dabbing in Morecambe Bay and was catching them two at a time nearly every drop !
Must have had close to 30 of them onboard with no trauma .

They only get the unwary, they are much less dangerous than a velvet swimmer !
 

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Grab them by the lip with forceps and then shake them off. Just be sure they dont land on you :p

They will take sandeel and lures on the boat while drifting over banks for bass.

Pain in the rear end.
 

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Great article PhilR

There's shed loads of lesser weavers off the rocks behind the processing plant at New Quay West Wales here: https://goo.gl/maps/19HrK8VHUnDtdsNRA

Like Phil Arontt says, I caught a load on prawn in the day there. They were on the bait before anything else got a look in. I think the shell fish waste attracts the shrimps and that in turn attracts lesser weavers in abundance.
 
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