The hounds were hunting in daylight for Bideford Angling Club members when they took part in the club’s first sea competition back after lockdown eased.

Stephen Found with the bull huss that gave him second place in the Bideford June rover.Stephen Found with the bull huss that gave him second place in the Bideford June rover.

North Devon anglers don’t tend to cram on to packed beaches so there was plenty of social distancing as they headed out to their chosen spots.

First place went to Paul Downing with a near-specimen smooth hound of nine pounds and 10 ounces, or 96.25 per cent.

Staying in the shark vein, Stephen Found was second with a nice bull huss of 9lb 4 ¼ oz (92.656 per cent) while Tarrant Wotton was third with another hound of 8lb 12oz (87.5 per cent).

Tom Downing was fourth with a hound of 8lb 6 and Tony Gooch fifth with a 7lb 2 huss, while Paul Ackland was sixth with a 6lb 13 smooth hound. All fish were returned.

Paul Downing was first in the Bideford June rover with a near specimen smoothound.Paul Downing was first in the Bideford June rover with a near specimen smoothound.

These hard-fighting small sharks will be about for the next few weeks – just get yourself some peeler crab bait and there are numerous spots to fish for them either side of Bideford Bay. Whole squid works on occasion too.

As shown in the photos, please try and support any shark species with two hands to distribute the weight across their body.

Tarrant Wotton with his third placed hound in the Bideford June sea rover.Tarrant Wotton with his third placed hound in the Bideford June sea rover.

Tom Downing was fourth with an 8lb 6 smoothound in the Bideford Angling Club June sea rover.Tom Downing was fourth with an 8lb 6 smoothound in the Bideford Angling Club June sea rover.

Tony Gooch with his fifth-placed huss caught in the Bideford June rover.Tony Gooch with his fifth-placed huss caught in the Bideford June rover.