Page:VCH Warwickshire 1.djvu/224

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A HISTORY OF WARWICKSHIRE be it remembered, is connected with War- wickshire, though only remotely, by some Oxfordshire streams. 1 7. White Bream. Abramis b/icca, Linn. The writer has seen a few specimens of bream which were taken in the Avon which he has no doubt were identical with the white bream of the Trent. Although specimens from that river have been examined there has not been a direct comparison between them and the ones taken in the Avon. 1 8. Bleak. Allurnus luciclus, Heck. & Kner. Common in most of the Warwickshire streams. Mr. G. S. Tye records its appear- ance in the Earlswood reservoir between Birmingham and Stratford-on-Avon, into which it must have been introduced. 1 9. Loach. Nemachilus karbatulus, Linn. Very few streams are without this species, but it seems to prefer the smaller ones, in which it may be found in plenty, often con- cealing itself in mud, much as eels are known to do, with its snout only visible. 20. Spinous Loach. Colitis taema, Linn. Known only to the writer as a Warwick- shire fish by the following, which appears in Yarrell's History of British Fishes : ' William Thompson, Esq., has found it in Warwick- shire.' MALACOPTERYGII 21. Salmon. Salmo salar. Linn. ' It has been taken from the eel traps in the river Tame at Tamworth ' (G. Sherriff Tye). 22. Trout. Salmo _fario, Linn. Found in many of the streams and brooks in the county. Very rare in the Avon, though occurring sparingly in many of its feeders. It occasionally works its way up very small brooks, and is taken so near their source that they are mere rills. In Bourne Brook, Fazeley, it has been taken as much as 7 Ib. in weight, and in the Thame of the weight of 5^ Ib. The river Cole at Pucking- ton is said to contain trout, as are also the streams in Sutton Park. The same may be said of the Stour, Arrow and Alne, as well of streams within the limits of the county which entering Oxfordshire become feeders of the Thames. 23. Grayling. Thymallus vexillifer, Linn. Of this fish, as occurring in the north of the county, Mr. Tye says : ' Also was 1 7 ozs. Bourne Brook, Fazeley.' APODES 24. Eel. Anguilla vulgaris, Turt. Numerous in the Avon and its tributaries, and indeed in rivers and pools in all parts of the county. Without entering into the question of the species of eels it may be well to record the difference of habit of the so-called varieties or species as observed in the principal stream in the county, the Avon. Silver eels, so designated by the fishermen, have sharp noses, small mouths, the upper surface dark and the lower silvery white, the line of demarcation being well defined. They are caught in nets or at the weirs in the autumn floods (locally termed ' freshes '), and rarely if ever on lines, in wicker putchins or in mud. Mud eels have broad heads, wide mouths, yellowish olive backs, and more or less yellow bellies, and all the colours are much blended. They are caught in summer on lines or> in wicker putchins, and are taken in winter from mud by means of the eel spear. It is very rarely that one is obtained with the silver eels in the nets. 1 86