Squid fishing in North Wales is a question that tends to pop up each year around October. This is spurred on by catch reports of squid along the south West coastline of the UK. They do however seem to be around in higher numbers during the warmers sea temperature months (July/August), that said they do appear year round.
Is there squid around the North Wales coast? Yes, most certainly. Information and catch reports are scarce hence the question keeps rearing its head. With the uncertainty of numbers, anglers are most likely hesitant to waste a session targeting a species they are unsure is even in the area.
From my initial research into squid numbers and how / where to target them along the North Wales coast line, it would seem a boat was needed. Commercial boats and charters have all encountered squid, usually as bycatch. The netting boats used to get them in great numbers a few years back, due to their size I would say common squid.
These grow to around 8 inch / 20cm in length. The European squid are much larger and prefer warmer waters so unlikely to venture this far North into colder areas.
Its taken a while but there are sporadic reports of catches with the bulk seemingly unintentional. Squid have been reported along the Llyn Peninsula, Anglesey and as far North East as Colwyn Bay. Most were either fowl hooked or took baits intended for other species when caught by shore anglers.
I’ve come across juvenile squid trapped in Rockpools on the West coast of Anglesey. Unintentionally caught or not there are definitely squid around the North Wales coastline, they just are not targeted hence the lack of information. I was initially under the impression that anglers would need deep water close in to target them, this isn’t the case. Squid are active predators and just like predatory fish they will hunt fish in the shallows.
A user of world sea forums fishing kindly sent me some pictures of squid he had come across while snorkeling at night. Living in Anglesey, he has come across them quite regular close to the shore and in very shallow water. (picture above)
You tube has plenty of videos of squid being caught from piers and jetties along the South Coast. They also targeted along the South Wales coast with eggs being uncovered on spring low tides.
When targeting Squid from the shore or boat specialist squid jigs are use. Rather than hooks, a circle or two of upwards facing spikes are used. Once the squid has a hold and if anglers maintain the pressure on the retrieve, they struggle to release themselves from the jig spikes.
As with all lures they come in various shapes and sizes with most mimicking large prawn. It’s difficult to say which colours work best so changing lures after several casts with no takes makes sense. Water clarity with also affect what jigs will work best, trial and error comes into play. Brown and Pink seem to work their magic on the South coast so it should along North Wales.
Once the Tier 3 Covid restriction is removed I will be out in search of the elusive North Wales Squid. I’ll make sure to update the website with my progress.