SPECIALIST anglers are gearing up for a winter of opportunity as cooling temperatures signal the start of the traditional pike-fishing season.

Several stretches of water around Keighley are known to be have some of the finest specimens of pike in West Yorkshire and as many specialists take to the bank, Keighley Angling Club has reminded all anglers to ensure they use the correct equipment to catch these magnificent fish before returning them safely to the water.

Bob Granger, deputy chairman, said: “Our waters are home to a wide variety of healthy fish including trout, bream and chub.

"However we are especially proud of the pike that patrol the canal and the River Aire.

"While for many, they have a fearsome reputation, pike are extremely susceptible if not handled correctly, so we insist that anyone fishing for them must use a suitably large net and landing mat to make certain catches are handled with appropriate care.

“We have already had reports of one pike weighing 11lb being brought to the river bank.

“We are also reminding members that our annual general meeting - the first for two years - will be held at the Marquis of Granby public house on Tuesday, November 16 at 7.30pm.”