We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.

Crucian carp (Carassius carassius) are very shy and tend to avoid our most popular canals. Read more about this wary fish.

Crucian carp, courtesy of Jack Perks Crucian carp, courtesy of Jack Perks
"Maggots, casters, chopped worms, sweetcorn and small cubes of luncheon meat are all very good baits for crucian carp." Carl Nicholls, fisheries & angling manager

Status: listed on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red list of Threatened Species

British record: 4lb 9oz (British record committee 2015)

Lateral Line scale count: 31-35 (this is the dark row of scales along the central length of the fishes body).

Lifespan: 10 years

Appearance: Crucian carp are hump backed with a deep bronze or golden body. They have no barbels around the mouth, unlike the common carp and have a long convex dorsal fin. They prefer shallow waters and are found in ponds and slow flowing rivers and canals. They are extremely hardy fish and can tolerate very cold, polluted waters and low oxygen conditions.

How to catch a crucian carp

Crucian carp like to shoal and can be found in large groups. They are very shy fish and tend not to be greedy feeders, lightly mouthing a bait rather than swallowing it in one go. Therefore it pays to strike at the very slightest movement of the float. Often, nothing further develops if a bite is left to ‘develop and more often than not, the chance of catching that fish has gone.

Maggots, casters, chopped worms, sweetcorn and small cubes of luncheon meat are all very good baits for crucian carp.

Where to catch a crucian carp

Their dislike of boat traffic limits the distribution of this species to lightly-boated canals.

Last date edited: 3 September 2015