Commercial carp fishing guide

Commercial carp fishing is without a doubt one of the easiest and most entertaining methods of catching carp, when fishing lakes such as this one you can expect spontaneous bites complied with action pact sessions where you go home after having caught tons of carp. 

The harsh reality of it is that many anglers do over confuse and complicate this simple but effective style of fishing, after having fished like this for years we can assure you, we’ve heard some things that are completely contradictory to how commercial lakes should be fished. Hence, why we decided to create this article to provide fellow anglers with an honest and truthful insight into how to fish commercial fisheries. Were by no means expert match fishermen however do love catching carp from different types of lakes.

Fishing commercial lakes are ideal if you want to keep your gear light, catch masses of fish and only fish for a couple of hours. If you don’t have much time on your hands but are dying to catch some immaculate carp, commercial fisheries are definitely the place for you.

As you may be aware we primarily fish for carp, so the tips and tricks we’ll be going through in this article are for the sole purpose of catching carp. This will include how to prevent fish such as bream, roach, F1’s, and tench from taking your bait. Not that we have anything against those fish however improveangling is primarily focused on catching carp. With that out of the way, let’s delve deeper into how you should approach commercial fisheries for the best possible results. In this article we’ll be going through the basics you’ll need to catch carp at commercial fisheries, what works best for us and tips for success, and addressing some misconceptions. If any of that sounds interesting then stick around for a few more minutes and continue reading.

What you’ll need!

Having the correct tackle for the job is the first way of ensuring you have a productive trip, in this section of the article we’ll be going through some items we found to help us keep productivity to a maximum when fishing commercial waters, we’ll also be explaining the reasoning behind their importance as we as there general role throughout the fishing process.


When carp fishing on commercial fisheries you are not restricted to using only a rod, a pole can also be a helpful tool especially when looking to catch a large number of carp as efficiently as possible. A pole is similar to a rod however doesn’t have a reel, this comes with its advantages and disadvantages. First of all, having a long 20 ft pole means you can gently lower your rig into the water whilst minimising your chances of spooking the carp in your swim. However it’s also known that catching slightly bigger carp on a pole, let’s say 10lb+ could be a challenging task, especially as you don’t have the capacity to let the fish tear some line. In worst cases, a bigger carp will either snap the line altogether or rip the hook out. Even though poles can have an elastic line like attached, catching bigger carp using them presents much more of a risk.

After having used both a pole and rod, we’d always stick with a rod, this however is a personal preference and also a result of the style of fishing we’d usually do. When course fishing at our local lake we stick with a trusty 10 ft rod, they allow you to chuck feeders at a decent range with a good level of accuracy as well as being easy to handle whilst on the bank. The smaller size of a 10 ft rod means they’re perfect for those quick bites that typically occur when fishing commercial waters. If you’re going on your first trip to a commercial fishery in a while or just want to upgrade your rod for the sole purpose of catching tones of carp in a short time frame we’d always recommend you go for a smaller rod.

Here’s a link to a rod we’ve used a countless number of sessions at commercial fisheries, this bit of kit has served us extremely well and we’d defiantly advise you consider taking a look. Whether your a beginner or an expert we believe this style of rod is perfect for the job, it’s strong yet maneuverable design makes reeling in those fabulous carp an absolute pleasure.

Daiwa Yank N Bank Feeder Rods (Check price on Amazon)

If you’d like to know more about our tops picks for different feeder rods on the market then feel free to check out one of our other articles, best feeder rods 2020.


If there’s one bit of kit we’d always recommend investing in, it would always be a reel. Getting a quality product will ensure you don’t come into any unnecessary obstacles which could have been avoided, this can be anything from the line falling off the reel to knots and tangles accumulating under the spool. Having personally dealt with issues such as these, we can assure you it’s not fun especially when you’ve just started catching.

When fishing commercial waters we’d advise you invest in a good bit of kit that will serve you well in the long run, a perfect example of such a reel is the Daiwa ninja, it’s practically designed for fishing commercial waters where you’re hot on the action and need a reliable, good quality reel to help bring in those masses of carp. If you know you’ll be fishing commercial waters then the Daiwa ninja is defiantly a reel worth considering.

Daiwa Ninja Reel (check price on Amazon)

As you may be aware there are many types of reels on the market form big pit reels to free spools, all of which work incredibly well for catching carp, however, if your fishing a small commercial fishery we believe having such a reel won’t add to your fishing. If you want a more general reel that can be used for all your carp fishing then consider checking out our article on best carp reels 2020


The next essential you’ll need when commercial fishing is a net, typically the carp you’ll be catching will be smaller so there’s no need to bring a large triangle carp net. Instead, go for something smaller and more maneuverable, this will make it much easier especially when fishing smaller lakes with smaller pegs. For the majority of our commercial fishing we use the new:

Guru commercial carp net (check price on Amazon)

With a net you’ll often have to purchase a handle separately, this may seem slightly annoying, it defiantly did for us, however, it will make your life easier in the long term allowing you to swap in different sized nets, we found this defiantly helps especially if you fish different styles as we like to do. If you do only want to fish commercial waters then this net and handle combo will last years and serve you well, in our opinion, it’s defiantly something worth investing in.

NGT new 3 meter 10ft landing net handle (check price on Amazon)

If it’s your first time going fishing or you just want to upgrade your net, we’d say picking up a good quality combo will not also make your life easier when fishing commercial waters but will also last for years, we’ve personally had net combos that we’ve used for over 10 years. Ensuring you have a quality product in these circumstances will actually save you money in the long run especially if you take your fishing seriously.


When commercial fishing, the bait you use should be simple and effective, getting the carp feeding consistently in your swim the majority of the time the way to go. We personally think that when fishing for carp on smaller venues especially, feeders work like magic, they deposit a good amount of bait around your hook bait, significantly increasing your chances of a bite. When using this technique stay alert as you should be getting a bite every 10-15 minutes.

Using a good method feeder mix is always what we go for, if you want a step by step guide of how to use this stuff properly then check out of our other articles on how to mix groundbait

There’s have a wide variety of hook baits you can use when commercial fishing, anything form pellets to maggots will all work, however, we find the fish tend to be more inclined to feeding continuously when they’re smaller. This doesn’t mean you can’t catch bigger carp however they are much smarter so do take the bait less frequently.

Our favourite baits for commercial fishing whether your using a float or feeder are:

  • Pellets (banded on as hook baits or in feeder mixes)
  • Pop-ups (small dumbells work great especially when you’re targeting the slightly bigger carp)
  • Maggots (highly attractive and are a legendary carp bait)
  • Sweetcorn (fake or reel work great)
  • Bread (we find it can only be used effectively when stalking, however, had to add it to the list as it’s given us so much success fishing commercials in the past)

All in all, once you’ve got these essentials your ready for a successful trip at a commercial fishery.

What works best

When fishing for carp on commercial waters, getting the basics right will ensure you get the most out of your trip. Now, after having gone into some detail on the gear you’ll need we’ll be delving deeper into how to use your tackle to catch the highest number of carp possible.

There are generally 2 methods of fishing for carp on commercials, this first being using a float rig and the second, we find to be a more effective technique, is using a feeder. Both these techniques work for catching carp and we’ve had success on both however after using both techniques on a countless number of sessions we’d say the level of success we achieved when using a simple method feeder rig was superior. Both these techniques are fairly simple and really effective, here’s a quick diagram showing you a float rig actually works:

When using a float, we find baiting up an area with some pellets, sweetcorn and ground bait is a good practice, once you can see the fish coming into your swim and feeding confidently, it’s the right time to chuck your float rig in. Remember, when float fishing it’s crucial to plumb the depth of the lake before trying to present a rig properly. If you’d like a more detailed guide going through this process then feel free to check out one of our other articles on how to float fish for carp.

Once you see that your swim is bubbling and possibly causing discolouration in the water, it’s a pretty good indication that fish are in fact feeding in your swim, being able to capitalize on this is vital if you want consistent bites so keep an eye out for how the swim changes, here’s an image of what a swim full of feeding carp looks like. This kind of activity is what you want to create to have the best swim possible.

As you can see we’re fishing close in, carp in commercial fisheries often like to feed near the margins, capitalize on this opportunity and you’ll be catching for hours.

Our preferred way of catching on commercials is method feeder fishing, we find whatever the season a method feeder always seems to work, if you haven’t tried using one, it’s defiantly worth giving it a try.

Catching carp using a method feeder is an absolute delight, watching the rod bend to almost a 90 degree is something we can never get bored of. A method rig is simple, get your self some ground bait, some pre-tied hooks with rubber bands, and a handful of pellets. There’s no need to overcomplicate this simple and effective style of fishing, the fish are used to these kinds of baits and won’t hesitate to feed.

Similar to float fishing, we like getting our swim ready in advance, throwing in 5 or so balls of ground bait really helps get your packed full of carp. Choose a spot and stick to it, whether it be close in or further out near an island or feature of the lake, using the same principle will get you the same result. If your fishing further out then we find a slingshot helps to get the ground baits out accurately, something defiantly worth considering if you plan of fishing long range.

If your fishing a lake with lots of nuisance fish then can also expect a few bites from them, we find removing pellets from the feeder mix and using pop-ups or wafters as a hook bait can sometimes solve the issue, give it a shot if you keep catching bream. If the lake your planning to fish is packed with F1s, bream, and tench, etc then doing some research beforehand to avoid the lake may also save you the trouble.

We find using simple methods on commercial waters defiantly helps to increase the volume of fish in our landing net, next we’ll be going on to discuss some tops tips to consider when catching carp on commercial fisheries.

5 top tips for commercial fisheries

Don’t overcomplicate it: When commercial fishing for carp the most effective techniques are often the simplest and easy to implement into your fishing. If you know something works there’s no need to try and add to it, the smaller carp you’ll be targeting are defiantly not as smart as specimen carp and are much easier to fool, not only do they not get spooked as easily but they don’t learn their lesson. This is perfect for us anglers as its possible for us to keep catching continuously from the same spot. If you know a specific bait or technique that works well for where you’ll be fishing, keep using it, when commercial fishing we think sticking to what you know works if always a better option.

Creating the ultimate swim: We find to get most success on commercial fisheries once we’ve built up a swim, its sometimes mind boggling how quickly you’ll get a bite after doing so. The way we find works best for the majority of situations is baiting up a 2×2 or 3×3 meter area, this means you have enough space to have plenty of fish feeding and have an easier area to cast out to, this can be helpful if your float, feeder or ever pole fishing to some extent. Balls of groundbait seem to really attract the fish, you can do so much to this simple bait to make it even more attractive. We sometimes mix in some carp goo into our feeder mix to give that extra level of attraction to our bait over other anglers and entice the fish even further.

The rig: Our all time favourite and the most trusted rig is the method feeder rig, you can use any method feeder, we find it doesn’t affect the fishing too much, in the winter we’d say using a smaller one could help however it’s by no means essential. Here’s a quick diagram showing the rig.

If we could only ever use one rig then it would have to be this one and here’s why, take a look at some of the carp we’ve caught back to back at commercial fisheries whilst using this effective technique. We’d strongly urge any commercial angler to use a method feeder, it really does sometimes work like magic.

For that very reason, we’ve decided to releases a curriculum based course teaching method feeder fishing. There we’ll be guiding you through the process from being a complete beginner to a confident resourceful angler. For only £9.99 we’ll be sharing with you how to pull endless numbers of carp out of the lake. Start feeder fishing today!

Figure out your environment: When fishing commercials we’d still advise taking some time to find out the characteristics of the lake you’ll be fishing, this can be anything from speaking with fellow anglers to feeling out the lake bed with a led. Tie a large led to your line and cast out into different areas of your swim, you’ll get a clear indication to what the lake bed consistent of when dragging the led along the bottom. Once you find a nice clean and smooth spot you know its a perfect area to present your rig. If your fishing further out then clipping up also may be a good idea, all this will do is help you hit the target every time you cast.

Use the right bait: When commercial fishing we’d always recommend taking an assortment of different baits from pellets to pop-ups. These baits don’t take up much room in your tackle bag however can be really handy for those angling situations where your usual bait isn’t working as well. Being persistent is one thing, but if the fish aren’t into the bait for whatever reason tempting them out with something else could help transform your session. We sometimes find that the fish at commercials can have stages where their not biting on a high corn mix and plastic corn for the hook bait, this combination usually works wonders however when your in that situation we strong believers changing your bait to a pop-up, pellet or maggot could seriously help with getting the carp to feed. All in all don’t always rely on one bait, having plans b and c is always advisable.

Misconceptions around the subject

Some anglers are often under that impression that you need tons of gear to commercial fish costing your upwards of a £1000, this is completely false, we strongly believe that catching carp on commercial lakes is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways of fishing. A small tackle box, rod, reel, and net is all you’ll need. To prove this theory is correct we fished a commercial lake with extremely like gear, all we had was a rod & reel, a small tackle bag, and a net. We kid you not, implementing the tactics and tips we’ve talked about in this article allowed us to catch 50 5-15lb carp on the day. This left pro’s on the lake shocked, especially as they had so much tackle and we were pulling good sized fish out of the lake like it was nothing. We’re not saying this to show off by any means, instead want to show fellow anglers how easy commercial fishing for carp can be if done properly. Anyone with the basic gear is capable of having similar results.


In conclusion, if you’re looking to commercial fish for carp, defiantly go for it, we found it gives us hours of fun and would always recommend it. The simple and effective way of catching carp continuously is great for beginners, not to mention you can still catch some good sized carp from commercial fisheries.

So there you have it, a quick guide on commercial fishing for carp, if you found this article useful then feel free to check out some of our others

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