Forget about France and the big carp that can be caught there. Thailand is the land of the giants for carp fishing. Carp are known for their hard fighting nature so imagine the possibility of battling a fish the size of a heavyweight boxer. This is fishing in Thailand!
Thailand is home to some of the world's largest carp species. In fact the Giant Siamese carp (Catlocarpio siamensis) is the largest of all carp species in the world and has been reported at 300kg (661lb) a catch that if it had been scientifically recorded could weigh the species in as the confirmed second largest freshwater fish in the world. Jullien's Golden price carp or Isok barb (Probarbus jullieni) can grow to well over 30kg (66lb) and have been recorded at 70kg (154lb). The Big head carp (Aristichthys nobilis) or Chinese carp can grow to over 50Kg (110lb), both of these species are easily big enough to test even the most experienced of anglers. There is another big one called the Rohu (Labeo rohita) or Indian Carp which is also very sought after by many Thai and foreign anglers and is a very desirable food fish in many Asian countries. This Big Carp species has a Max size of around 45Kg (99lb). There are many other smaller species of carp in Thailand such as the Common carp (Cyprinus carpio) which oddly does not grow to anywhere near the proportions of its European or Canadian cousins (10lb fish would be considered huge).
Carp fishing tackle and tactics in Thailand are centered around the method feeder with various styles being employed from home-made wire coil devices to custom made plastic molded European carp fishing style feeders. Baits used on the feeders are usually bread mix or rice flour known as (lum) in Thai. All sorts of natural and synthetic additives, scents, flavourings and "secret" ingredients are then added to the mix by the angler or fishing guide to his own specification. Pre-baiting to varying degrees is almost essential to ensure good catches outside of fishing parks and resorts.
For hook-baits most common now for carp fishing in Thailand are small polystyrene or cork balls which are popped up on hair rigs. These are unwittingly sucked in by the carp feeding on the ground-bait thus hooking themselves in the process.
Bread is also commonly used. Articles such as worms, grubs or even nuts presented over ground-bait as an attractor can be very effective, although smaller fish intercepting can be a nuisance. Boilies are known to work in some western run fisheries but rarely if ever in Thai fishing parks.
Floating and surface baits can be really fun. Dog biscuits super-glued to a fly hook or fake bread flies can get takes on the drop in lakes and fishing parks where the fish are confident in surface feeding.
Carp and Barb Fish Species in Thailand
Big Head Carp
) was introduced from China hence the name Plah Jin, Jin being a colloquial term for China in Thai language. Now well established all over the country and known to be breeding in the Mekong river. The origin of the common name comes from is its very large head...more>>
Black Shark Minnow
is native to Thailand and common in the wild and in fishing parks and stocked lakes. They will take a range of baits including flies. Labeo chrysophekadion
are very beautiful looking fish with stark dark grey to black bodies and lorage dorsdal fins ...more>>
Also known as the Indian carp this species is fairly common in fishing parks and resorts. Can be caught using bread mixes and rice flour mixes or worms are always effective. In Thai style lakes where there is catfish chaos going on then it may be more effective to try the quieter areas of the lake if you want to catch one of these....more>>
The original Common carp was native to the inland delta of the river Danube down to the Black sea. Since then it has been introduced on purpose for food and sport or by accident to every continent except Antarctica and near every country in the world. The Romans bought Cyprinus carpio
to Western Europe as a food fish and later spread all the way across Europe to Britain by monks. Cross breeding has...more>>
Giant Siamese carp
is the largest carp species in the world.
The mother of all carp, Plah Caho (กระโห้
) in Thai language is a native to Thailand and the Mekong, Chao Phraya rivers. These Mega fish can grow to gigantic proportions. Fishing tactics are quite different to what European carp anglers may be used to...more>>
Jungle Perch (Hampala macrolepidota).
Great sporting fish, not usually found in fishing parks. To target the Jungle perch you need to get out into the rural and natural areas of Thailand. Most reservoirs have either natural or introduced populations. Quite an aggressive predator which hunts mainly in packs...more>>
Jullien's Golden Price carp
) is a rare Asian carp species which is native to Thailand preferring habitat with sand or gravel bottom. It has very distinctive dark lateral stripes on white/gold underneath. Very hard to find and catch in the wild it has been stocked in many fishing lakes around Thailand...more>>
) are found in many fishing parks but are not easy to target specifically for travelling anglers. These smaller size carp have been introduced to Thailand from their native range in India where they are endangered considered on the Red list...more>>
The Rohu (Labeo rohita)
or Indian carp is common in Thailand's reservoirs and stocked in many fishing parks and resorts. Can be caught using worms and conventional carp fishing methods that are effective in Thailand such as method feeder with rice flour and ground bait mixes with pop ups...more>>
) is found in the mountain rivers of Thailand in clear fast flowing waters. To target them is off the beaten track and you will most likely need a guide to help you. Max size of 3kg they are hard fighting on light spinning tackle or with a fly rod...more>>