Summer margin fishing with meat

Margin fishing with meat has won me plenty of matches in the past, often getting me out of jail on many matches where I've struggled to catch early on and then gone onto catch well on the meat later on.


Generally carp will move into the margins later in the afternoon and feeding meat here can be extremely effective for catching some large Carp late in a match.

MAP's Mike Robinson guides you through the basics of using one of the most popular commercial fishery baits, meat. in the video below 


I'll begin to think about feeding the margins half way through a match cupping in half a 250ml pot of 8mm cubes of meat into to the margin as close to the bank as possible. The ideal margin would have a clear flat bottom directly below some bankside vegetation about 2 foot deep. But it's worth checking the bottom with your hands before you set up if possible. You don't want a margin with lots of tree roots and old twigs and branches in it. Hooking old bits of twig can spook the carp and it can be a while before come back in. A clear hard bottom is perfect.

Unless I see signs of fish colouring up the water, or tails swirling I will feed and then leave the swim to settle for 15-20 minutes before having a look in the margin. If there is a carp present in the swim then generally you will get an indication in the first few minutes however if there are no signs after five minutes I prefer to look elsewhere to keep my catch rate ticking over and generally begin to loose feed a few 8mm cubes of meat every 5 minutes over the initial fist pot. If I'm not getting any carp come in at this point I will begin to throw 6mm hard pellets onto the surface of the margin. By doing this I am hoping to attract the carp to the noise and then they will hopefully begin feeding on the meat.

After leaving the margin for another 15 minutes I'll try again loose feeding a few 8mm cubes and then As soon as I've fed, I lift the rig clear of the water for five seconds before slowly lowering it back in again, right on top of the bait I've just fed. I remove the float from the swim straight after feeding in order to minimise the chances of line bites and foul-hooking, which is something that tends to happen when feeding over the top of the float. Once my rig is in place it's then just a case of waiting for a bite. If I don't catch a fish it's simply a case of resetting the trap by feeding again and then repeating presentation of the rig after 5 seconds again. What I am trying to do is feed for just one or two fish, catch one and then repeat the process.

This tactic generally works well during the summer and especially as we get into the autumn. I find the later end of the summer to be best and some days the fish come into the margins very early during a match and a great days fishing is on the cards.

Sometimes you can get "bitted out" with roach and the float will be dipped up and down a lot. Its just a case of feeding and waiting for the carp bites to come. Sometimes if the bites are not coming I'll add another section of pole on and move further along the margin. Sometimes these old wiser carp will be sitting there just off the feed and its worth trying this if your struggling for bites.

Rigs need to be strong and I use either 0.2g or a 0.3g Nick Gilbert NG XT Mini Diamond pole float which are short stemmed and very strong, set up on 0.18 mainline with a small bulk of No.10 or no.8 stotzs above a 6 inch hook length tied to a size 14 B911 spade end hook set up on red hydro.