Introducing the Wild Carp Trust

1 May 2020

A letter of thanks from our founders: Stu Harris, Matt Tanner and Fennel Hudson

Thank you for expressing interest in wild carp. The purpose of the Wild Carp Trust is to celebrate the wild carp, champion and fight for its protection, educate others about its importance and, most importantly, to conserve the few remaining strains we have left.

It’s amazing to think that seven years have passed since we had the idea to create a ‘Wild Carp Trust’. You might ask why it’s taken seven years to mobilise something so important. Well, in truth, it hasn’t.

Matt has already done a great deal of work exploring the foundations and of a Trust, setting up the Wild Carp Trust Facebook group, leading fishing trips to Welsh wild carp waters, ensuring those who control the fishing understand the importance and value of their fish stocks, and, most recently, he has been maintaining a physical presence on wild carp waters threatened by otter predation.

Stu has written about wildies and done a great job in producing several YouTube videos about them. Likewise for Fennel with his blogs, articles and book about wild carp. And Stu and Fennel recorded a professional film about wild carp, which sadly came to nothing when the production company admitted that they’d lost the footage.

What has changed, that gave us the nudge to accelerate things, is that after seven years of searching, we have finally secured a lake where we can stock and conserve wildies. This one-acre pool is to be managed as a nature reserve and occasional fishery from which we can secure the future of a special strain of carp and use for photo shoots when promoting the Trust’s activities in articles, blogs and films.

Whilst the conservation project is to be promoted, the location of the lake is to be kept ultra-secret. We can’t afford for it to be poached, polluted, or stocked with king carp by someone who doesn’t share our views.

2020 will be spent getting the lake ready for a stocking of wildies, which we hope to introduce once they’re big enough to avoid predation by cormorants.

We hope you find this news to be exciting and inspiring.

You are to be admired and congratulated for appreciating the unique and ultra-special qualities of our ancient and historic strains of wild carp. These super-rare bloodlines, some of which are medieval, are living connections with the past.

Sure, we’ll be reminded that wildies are genetically the same as king carp, that true wild carp only live in the Danube and such rivers, and we’re only getting excited about feral carp that, in some people’s eyes, should have been allowed to die out long ago. But that’s not the point. There are a great many ‘rare and ancient breeds’ of animals that share the same genetics as their modern relatives. They were rescued from near-extinction and now remind us of how wonderful, novel and important they are. Let’s do the same for our beloved wildies.

So we’re doing what we can for these wonderful fish. They’ve existed for centuries on their own but, in the current climate of predation, water quality, fashion for king carp, and misbeliefs that ‘biggest is best’, they face their toughest-ever challenge for survival.

Now’s the time for us to offer them our help. And help them we will, with our new lake and combined ability to ‘conserve, promote, educate, and celebrate’.

Thank you

Stu, Matt and Fennel