Pope or ruffe

More commonly known as the tommy ruffe, this little fish can be a real pest on some rivers. Unlike most small fish it has a very large mouth and is quite capable of taking a lobworm intended for larger fish. The tommy ruffe is a bottom feeder and looks rather like a miniature perch without the stripes. Ruffe can be caught very easily using worms or maggots on float and leger tackle. The ruffe has the annoying habit of clamping its mouth tightly shut and extending its gill flaps when lifted out of the water. To remove the hook, gently press the gill covers flat and it will obligingly open its mouth. Like the gudgeon and bleak, the ruffe rarely grow to a weight of more than 4 oz.