I was enjoying a break from the poor British summer by spending some time in Sardinia. My hotel sat on a rocky peninsula in the north of the island, not far from the city of Alghero. In this fantastic location I snorkelled every day in the very clear – but surprisingly cold – Mediterranean waters. Fish life was abundant. Several species of wrasse and bream, golden-grey mullet, striped red mullet and damselfish swam amongst the rocks and eel-grass.

When travelling I pack a rudimentary fishing outfit: A lightweight six-piece travel rod, a Daiwa reel, and a small Tupperware container of the basics – line, hooks, lures, and other bits of terminal tackle. This kit won’t handle a serious fish, but is fine for targeting smaller species.

I considered fishing off the rocks and jetty in front of the hotel, where I had seen so many fish. I wasn’t sure how that would be received by the management, so I scouted for another spot nearby.

It was near midday, but as I had the fishing gear with me, I thought I’d conduct a trial run for twenty minutes. I threw a few crusts of bread onto the water’s surface to see if there were any bream or mullet in casting distance. No fish came into the shallow water over the rocks to take my offering.

I found a spot which where I could dangle a line into a crack between two rocks into some deepish water. I baited a size 10 hook with a small pink Marukyu Power Isome worm and using the only lead in my box – a 1oz bullet – I built a drop-shot arrangement. I dangled the rig into the crack between the sharp rocks. In the clear water, the wriggling of the Isome attracted some attention from rainbow wrasse and damselfish, but both species have mouths too small for this hook.

I was beginning to think that my gear was oversized for these micro-species, but after ten minutes a rattling bite told me that a wrasse was well hooked. I swung the small fish up and into my palm.

Five-spotted Wrasse, Symphodus roissali

The wrasse resembled a female corkwing, but with some post-trip research and consultation with some LRF experts, I’m confident it is a female Five-spotted Wrasse.

Soon after, I snagged the hook and lost the rig and my only sinker, so called it a day, and made plans to re-visit the mark at first light.

Total Catch:

  • 1 Five-spotted Wrasse