A guide to photographing fish for British Record claims
The speed of assessment of freshwater record fish claims is heavily influenced by the quality and type of photographs submitted. Photographs taken should give information on colour, size, shape and fin ray and lateral line counts. Where this information is available the species of fish can be confirmed and hybrids and misidentifications can be quickly discounted.
All of the required information can be gained from 3 simple photographs:
1. Trophy shot. A normal angler with catch photograph gives a good indication of the size of the fish relative to itís captor.
2. Head on view. A photograph of the fish head on gives the shape of the body of the fish. This is particularly important to prevent confusion between crucian carp and goldfish and between silver fish and their hybrids. This view also gives a good view of the shape of the mouth.
3. Fins and lateral line. A photograph of the fish with fins extended enable clear counts of fin rays and shows the position of the fins relative to each other. This is critical information for the identification of many species. This shot also gives a clear view of the lateral line, the scale count of which is another important feature.
The addition of an item of fishing tackle, in this case a float, gives additional information about the scale of the fish.