Everyone from raw novices to anglers with many years of "flattie bashing" under their belt will be out wrapped up warm in their bright red float suits, fishing with everything from full blown beachcasting outfits through to specialised rods such as the "Flattie Fanatic" or the superb Diawa bass rods which double up as excellent flounder rods.

As the tide runs up the sinuous mudflat channels the flounder follows closely, often in just inches of water, then as the tide overflows the channels to cover the flats the flounder spread out, searching for worm and small crustaceans. This is the best time to catch a specimen three pound plus fish. Such a fish will fillet superbly and make a meal fit for a King, but truthfully a fish weighing less than two pounds is hardly more than a taster and in today’s world of ever less fish, deserves to be returned.

Fortunately the flounder is a robust fish which, with careful handling, will easily go back and swim away to fight another day.

If the hooks that you use are lightweight 1/0 Aberdeen’s, the hook can often be given a quick jerk and because of its superb temper will partially straighten for a moment and disgorge from the fish, instantly springing back to its former shape. If the hook is easily accessible then the use of a Gemini disgorger or long nose pliers will enable the hook to be removed often without taking the fish from the water.

If you choose to release your fish, avoid handling them if at all possible. If they do have to be handled, use a sopping wet towel, avoid squeezing the gill area’s and be quick to get them back in the water.

Any questions to russ@reelfoto.com