Who knew that having an otter visiting your fishery could be so devastating and stressful? This is our first year not just at Forest View Carp Lake (near Limoges) but also as fishery owners. The fishery has been operating for almost 10 years and otters have not previously been a problem we understand but in December 2017 we felt what it was like to have this problem to deal with. Unless you are a fishery owner it is hard to explain but we were sick to our stomachs and close on the back of an 82lb record fish being landed we now lost a number of our lovely fish and protecting the large specimens became even more urgent.

We knew we had to act fast but it was Christmas and France is closed often enough without adding the holidays into things! Asking around Dave Marvell at Otter Stop was very quickly identified as the man to speak to and boy did he prove to be the right man. He helped at every step of the way at a time of year when it is always difficult to get things done quickly and added to that his normal supplier had a production problem. Notwithstanding Dave sorted a quote and we liaised with a contractor in France for the install. The result is that after only 5 weeks (seemed much longer!!) we are fenced in with a 900 metre fence and feel rather more secure and that our business will survive rather than being decimated by the otter issue.

Dave has gone above and beyond and has been accessible and friendly as well and very knowledgeable and guiding. His pricing was really good too and without him this whole thing would have been a lot worse and we are most grateful for his input all along the way.

With otters and other predators mostly protected and populations growing if you don’t have this problem it doesn’t mean you never will. We do wish we had acted sooner but whatever your situation Otter Stop are the guys you want to call as it is likely only a matter of time before those lovely fluffy creatures appear and then don’t seem quite so cute!

Daniel Williams and Amelia Long
Forest View Carp Lake , Chateau Chervix

”I recently achieved a lifelong ambition of buying my own fishery, Borwick lake in Lancashire has been a specialist carp fishery for the past 30 years, the previous owner had stated that he hadn’t seen otters at the fishery, but I knew it was only a matter of time before we got a an unwelcome visit and decided to get a couple of quotes straight away, with the intention of starting the fence in the spring. The lake is an ex gravel pit approx. 35 – 40 years old , very pretty with lilies and lots of bankside vegetation and trees, an inlet stream and obviously an outlet, all potential difficulties when looking to protect the lake with a fence.

“After a lot of internet research about otters and fences and companies offering the service, I called otterstop and made an appointment to meet Dave on site, I immediately found him very knowledgeable and after questioning him about how he would go about the work, was impressed that he obviously knew his stuff and was passionate about protecting fisheries, he even has his own specialist carp lake and had just completed his own fence. Dave spent around 2-3 hours surveying the fishery and discussing how and where the fence route would go round the lake, he subsequently emailed a full breakdown of the work required and fully itemised all of the costs, it wasn’t cheap, but quality seldom is! I told him that and that I would be in touch. I thought I may be able to get cheaper quotes and invited a couple of other contractors who purport to be specialist in this field , they were nowhere near as knowledgeable or professional and both were slightly more expensive!

“Whilst I was taking my time, unbeknown to me, we had unfortunately been visited by otters, one of the syndicate members had found a still live 25lb carp that had been dragged up the unlet stream with considerable injuries, this poor old girl subsequently died of her injuries. We were shocked and after speaking to other members of the syndicate had come to the realisation that the attacks had probably been going on for some time. I got onto Dave straight away, told him of my problem and to his credit he told me he would see what he could do and call me back. Within an hour he was back on the phone and had managed to shift around his planned workload in order to help me out and get my much needed fence started as soon as possible. He teamed up with a local contractor and started  within 2 weeks by clearing a route through the trees and undergrowth, those 2 weeks were the longest I have experienced, many hours were spent walking the lake banks hoping I wouldn’t see a dreaded otter! The old stock boundary fence was ripped out and the new route was carefully created, the post knocking machine came in straight after with a team of men fixing the fence wire in place ,  lastly the underskirt was fixed on and covered with soil. The work was carried out with the utmost of care and very quickly,  the whole job took 2 weeks to complete. Dave worked alongside the contractor and it’s his specialist knowledge that sets him apart from your local fencing contractor, this isn’t a run of the mill fencing job and needs a specialist, as the fence is only as good as its weakest link!

“I would have no doubt in recommending Dave Marvell and otterstop if you have need of an otter fence to protect your stock, and believe me, you will need a fence sooner rather than later!”

Steve Cream, Owner Borwick Lake, Lancashire

“The service that Otter Stop provided was top quality. From initial request for information and proposal through to final installation was completely hassle free.

“They developed a top quality product on time and to budget.  Their care and attention to detail during the 7 days on site was impressive with their knowledge of what fisherman need always at the front of things.

“Dave Marvell and his team worked solidly through the 7 days despite the appalling cold and wet January weather.  We have also been delighted with our angler’s feedback on the fence since the installation.

“My advice is, if you have an otter problem then call Otter Stop. You won’t be disappointed.”

David Hammond – Owner Gwinear Fishery Cornwall

“On behalf of The Carp Society I would like to say a very big thank you to Dave Marvell and the team at Otterstop for the fantastic job they have done at Horseshoe Lake.  I first became aware of Otterstop at a conference at Sparsholt College where Dave was giving a talk.  The following winter I discovered a couple of dead Carp on Horseshoe, the carp had obviously been attacked by a predator and although I couldn’t be 100% certain the culprit was an Otter , there were enough signs to set the alarm bells ringing.  I contacted Dave shortly afterwards with regard to fencing Horseshoe Lake and from our first contact I knew Otterstop were the guys to go to.  Dave came to Horseshoe Lake and did a complete survey. He sent me a comprehensive list of the materials and labour costs and we agreed a price and a start date.

“The start date arrived and Dave and the team arrived along with the materials and machinery and the whole team then went to work like Trojans.  Horseshoe is a 62 acre lake and certainly would be no easy task to fence. Otterstop completed the job in a time scale I would have thought impossible, and the finished fence is fantastic, I couldn’t be happier with it, so much so that we have now asked them to fence two more of our other lakes, Farriers and Little Farriers.  The fence is aesthetically pleasing and more importantly it is rock solid and more than up to the job.  I have seen no sign of Otter predation since the fence was completed.  An additional bonus of the fence is that it now also gives more personal security for the angler and allows them to fish alone at night with peace of mind.

“Otter predation is not going to go away, no Member of Parliament is ever going to stick is head above the parapet on behalf of angling so the only option for fishery owners and Managers is to fence, but more importantly, the only option is to fence well, it’s a large investment and you need the best, cheap alternatives simply will not do the job and will spell disaster. Speak to Otterstop, you won’t be disappointed.”

Miles Carter – Fisheries Manager for The Carp Society

“I would like to thank you for erecting an Otter fence around the whole perimeter of Chilham Mill.
“I am very pleased with the end result, the fence is of a high quality, I now feel confident that I am protected from otters, which gives me great peace of mind.

“I have found you to be very professional and helpful, and I would be happy to recommend your services to any other fishery owners.”

Vince Leader – Owner Chilham Mill Fisheries

“I would like to tell you how pleased we are with the otter fencing you erected at our fishery (Coombe Water Fishery). You and your staff have done an excellent job. You were thoroughly professional and the finished article looks amazing.

“I would welcome any visits from you and any potential clients to show how a sympathetic vision can turn what might be visually offensive into something that has blended into the surroundings and has not affected the aesthetic appearance of the lakes.”

Jonathan Robinson

“I just wanted to write and say that I am now sleeping at night, safe in the knowledge that all my fish are secure. Having spent lots of time and money on the 12 strand electric fence, I was pretty sure I had been secure before, but somehow they  still got in ! I am going to add a single wire of electric about 3 feet up your fence just as a ‘belt and braces job’ but I don’t think I really need to, its just for my own sake. The fence looks very tidy, and the quality is excellent so I am very happy overall. I look forward to working with you on the syndicate water in the next six months.”

Terry – Near Gatten Fishery, South Shropshire

“I have used Otter Stop and was very pleased with the speed of reaction provided by the supplier. I wanted to install very quickly and Mr Marvell pulled out all the stops to get me a fence to the site and installed within 2 weeks of placing an order. The supplier has worked tirelessly with me over a number of issues and was thoroughly supportive – I can wholly recommend their use. Service was particularly second to none.”

Simon Brain, BA Tech Arbor A – Chartered Arboriculturist

“Bathampton AA would like me to thank you for the superb job that you did of installing otter fencing around our three lakes at “The Dave Crookes Fishery at Hunstrete”. The total length of 1,400 metres around a perimeter that was mostly tree lined was in itself a challenge but you overcame every obstacle and finished the job within your timescale of 14-15 working days.  

“We will take pleasure in recommending you to any other fishery owner or club that are looking at installing otter fencing around their fishery.”

Dave Crookes – Dave Crookes Fishery at Hunstrete

“With the increasing otter and mink numbers around the lake, I decided to protect my fish stocks from attack. After speaking to Dave he advised me on what was needed to achieve this. His team worked quickly to erect a quality fence around the lake. I am very pleased with the final result and have had no problem since.”

Elaine Holloway – Merrington Fishery, Shrewsbury