so, you’ve accidentally caught a bird and not the fish. now what ?

that’s maybe not so far-fetched as it might seem at first as it’s hard to think of a place where we fish that isn’t also inhabited by birds and these birds will more often than not want to eat the very same things the fish do.
so far, i’ve managed to not hook any but a bat caught my fly on my back cast once and since i was fishing/casting upstream, by the time i first realized what happened and then brought it back to me it had drowned. sad moment.

in the video we’ll see an unfortunate fish-chasing gull who gets out of this predicament seemingly just fine, yay !
i can’t help but remember all the countless times i’ve had to yank out a fly during a drift when it was approached by ducks. this brings grrrrrs but a few grrrrs are a million times better than accidentally catching a creature that will probably fly off…

as noted, if this happens to you stay calm, be gentle yet firm and try to wrap the bird in a towel, t-shirt or something just as you’d wrap up a wounded cat or other animal. if you can, cover their eyes. being wrapped and temporarily blinded usually immobilizes them, giving you a better opportunity to get rid of that hook. speaking of hooks, it’s obvious once again that a barbless hook will a lot easier to remove if it already hasn’t come off as you retrieved the animal.

this isn’t an enjoy ! post but something to keep in the back of the mind. enjoy anyway.

 

 

hookless fly-fishing

here’s a little something different from Lee Spencer, way different.

i can relate to Lee’s story as i used to live right next to a wee stream in the french Pyrenees that apart from making lovely gurgling noises, had a very healthy population of gorgeous native brown trout. they weren’t of course, but these where ‘my’ trout if you see what i mean. i’d go look at them every day to see how they where doing, dream off into that dream place that being streamside takes one and of course learned a lot about how they lived, behaved and interacted socially, some of them even had names.

by wee i mean that at this level the stream was often no more than one metre wide. being completely wild and untouched by man and with lush vegetation abound, the stream itself was more often than not a green tunnel with a flow. once the obstacles of actually getting an imitation into their feeding spots where figured out, this being a Bow and Arrow cast nine.nine times out of ten because that was the only possible solution, getting these beauties to take a fly was relatively simple, they didn’t know anything about fishing pressure and in their world things that look like food generally are food but hooking up quickly became a problem, something the Bow and Arrow cast only tactic might have alluded to; there was no room to move the rod up, across or down to fight and land the fish. at this point i was already getting into the ‘it’s more about the strike than the fight and land‘ frame of mind so, the idea of cutting off the whole hook bend of a completed fly came to mind and was perfect for this particular situation.
i got my strike thrill, the little fishies i loved so much never really knew what was going on and remained where they’re supposed to be and i could do all this without breaking any more rod tips…

of course, i’m not expecting a lot of other anglers to go fishing without hooks but it’s a little something to think about. like mentioned earlier, it’s different, enjoy !


“Back in 1998 Lee Spencer did two things that changed his relationship with the big steelhead of the North Umpqua River.
He agreed to become the first full-time FishWatch guardian of the Big Bend Pool on Steamboat Creek, where as many as 400 large steelhead spend the summer in startlingly plain sight after swimming up the North Umpqua to spawn.
And he started cutting the points off the hooks on his flies… “

actually, just the points:

pointless-fly
“Everybody thought I was crazy, To me the whole peak of everything is the strike or the boil. Everything after that is downhill. Especially if you have to wait a long time to land the fish.
When you get a fish on, you get a run and a jump and at the jump it will throw the hook. That was satisfying enough for me.”

-click the image for the complete article on Deseret News-

Bubbles and Bubba

Bubbles reminded me of being a little kid in the local lake just sitting there, feeling the water, head just above the surface blowing little bubbles because blowing little bubbles is tingly, they make a heck of a lot more noise underwater than above and it just feels good and exciting.

Bubba is more than comfortable with subsurface bubbling. i’m told it’s a skill that just gets better and better with age so, i guess i’ll just have to go see if that’s true.

A (very short) history of Landing Nets

i hope you’re not too excited as the (very short) part of this post’s title should give you a clue that unfortunately and after several hours of research, there isn’t a whole lot available on the subject.

there’s of course the more than obvious dictionary definition with a tentative origin date:

landing net def.

and a few more tidbits such as these-

Izaak Walton and his scholar - 16hundredsomething (those outfits !)
Sir Izaak Walton and his scholar – 16hundredsomething
(those outfits !)
Claes Jansz Visscher - 1630
Claes Jansz Visscher – 1630
BrookesFrontpiece1790
Brookes Frontpiece – 1790

but it was only through The History of Silk, Cotton, Linen, Wool, and Other Fibrous Substances which interestingly enough isn’t credited to any authors… that i was able to back a bit further in scoop-net time to find this sorta-quote from Oppian of Anazarbus, a Greco-Roman poet-dude who lived in the 2nd century. alas !!! (remember, i spent  few hours on and off the landing net topic and this is as exciting as the subject gets)Oppian

apart from a variety of different materials used throughout history to create the basic hoop, bag and handle, very-very little has changed and i guess that even the creative mind will have a hard time improving whats basically perfect as it is. with so many objects/tools/things of all types that could do with a little redo, i really like the idea that this one is something we don’t have to think about.

to finalize today’s mostly useless yet hopefully pleasant history blurb, the image below is an offshoot of a series of images i took of a very traditional and exquisitely hand-made landing net review i’ll publish in the following days.

the historical curiosity, i guess, a direct tactile connotation of having handled, twisted, turned and scrutinized this lovely object/tool. history aside, this one’s easy to pick up but hard to put down…

netmesh m.fauvet-TLC 20-3-16

the SloMo Tricos of the Bitterroot

this gorgeous short from Joe Cummings doesn’t need any words except, enjoy !

 

for previously posted trico tying tutorials click here.

The closer he looks at the fish, the less he sees…

“We refer to the custom of placing a quantity of small dots of two colours very near each other, and allowing them to be blended by the eye placed at the proper distance … The results obtained in this way are true mixtures of coloured light … This method is almost the only practical one at the disposal of the artist whereby he can actually mix, not pigments, but masses of coloured light.”
Georges Seurat on Pointillisme

“We do it out of contempt for human art, but mostly because it makes us pretty.”
Trout on ‘The Beautiful art of Camouflage’

RB dosalfin m.fauvet-TLC 3-6-15

Return of the Warrior II

a few days ago we’d seen this lovely fish’s gill plate with a ‘part One’ suggestion there’d be more in the form of its return to its home.
neither film needs any comment but i wanted to explain the ‘King of the Pond/Warrior’ bit.

Lake Trouto (my name for it) is a farm pond i regularly visit when wild trout season is closed. being a private and closed environment (to natural waterways and wild fish), french regulations allow these types of waterways to remain fishable year round which means i can get my trout fix without being the miserable git that goes through trout depression throughout the closed months like so many of my friends.
it is of course a stocked fishery mostly consisting of rainbow trout but there’s also perch, rudd, a few sunfish and monstrous yet uncatchable grass carp. i’ve tried… they don’t seem to eat grass but i haven’t given up !

Trouto has never been a high-pressure fishery. the owner always considered it a small sideline to his farming activities and as such, stocked it maybe once a year and irregularly at best, never did much bank-side grooming and basically let it and its dwellers take care of themselves. fisher convenience came last. this is just about as close to a wild environment as we can find in an artificial system. the trout here all came from a fishery that never fed them industrial pellet food but natural things like bugs, worms and whatnot. these fish switch over to natural feeding habits instantly.
blobs and boobies and whatever typical flashy, fluorescent, over-saturated stockie reservoir-type flies don’t work here and put the fish down. in fact they scatter as if they’d seen thunder.
they want real food and their imitations. a local entomologist once told me there’s approximately 40 (yes 40) different species of Ephemeroptera/mayflies in this small area (if that isn’t a fly fisher’s nightmare i don’t know what is… ), stoneflies, caddis, bibbios, younameits, several species of dragonflies and chironomids galore. a favourite pastime in the warmer months is to go there and watch the trout race after the dragonflies, jump out and grab them on the fly.

as you’ll have guessed, these are not the dumb stockies we so often hear about. they’re as tough-fighting, resistant, cunning and glorious as their wild-borne counterparts and that’s why having this resource close to home is priceless to me. over the last ten or so years Trouto has become not only a great place to have fun but also a place to test flies, techniques, equipment, observe all of the dweller’s behaviours and “try” to break the semi-wild stillwater code but to be honest, i’ll never break that code and don’t want to.

to conclude, on friday 10th of October 2014 the Warrior measured in at 55cm/22″ and weighs 1,25 kg/2,75 lbs. most would smirk at such a little fish but it happens to be the biggest catch on record at Trouto in four years.
it managed to thrive, escape and remain beautiful throughout, fishers, cormorants, otters, osprey and the occasional poacher that sneaks in at night: he’s the King of the Pond and i’m humbled to have spent a little time with him.

the magic of giffology allows us to see the same film in C&R&R&C mode. i hope you’ll like it too.

Return of the Warrior backandforth M.Fauvet:TLC

Fly Lines- Barrio SmallStream 2wt Line test

via Merge Fly Fishing

the video below isn’t much of a review in itself but it sums up all the important features and the film’s lovely location is a perfect example of where this new Barrio line shines like a star.
its short yet very stabile and well proportioned head design lets anglers of all levels easily get the fly where it should go in these tight spaces, whether we’re using aerial or rolls or spey casts.
i used this line model extensively throughout the past season in 3, 4 and 5wts and the great first impressions with each one haven’t changed a bit: i very highly recommend it.

in case you’re wondering, its use isn’t confined to minuscule fish as buddy Sandy Nelson demonstrates here !
sandy's smallstream troot

available in tan or light olive from sizes 1 to 5, click either pic for more info and user reviews on the Barrio site.
at 27£ ( 34€ – 43US$) including fast shipping anywhere in the world this one’s a no brainer.
barrio smallstream

its time to take your water thermometer out

here’s why.

personally, apart from sort-of ‘bragging rights’ where i might use my thermometer to show i’ve been fishing in minus 10° temps (as if that was something to brag about…), this is the only serious use of one i can foresee.
i don’t live and generally fish in an area where any kind of bug activity can be predicted by water temperature but ! i definitely always have it with me in the hotter months to know when to stop fishing.
sometimes its best to put the rod away and go for a swim instead or simply pretend to be a hoot owl.

How to properly crush hook barbs

great stuff from ozarkflyflinger with very little to add. i can’t explain why but having the pliers inline with the hook point gives better results with fewer breaks of the barb and a smoother contact between the tip of the barb and the shank.
don’t forget the small pliers-small hook / big pliers-big hook ‘rule’ or you’ll either damage your pliers and/or get mediocre results. one last thing, be sure to apply smooth pressure and not some hard and quick squeeze.
personally, i only tie with factory barbless hooks because the hook design is almost always better at holding fish on than with ‘standard’ designed hooks with crushed barbs but this trick is always good to use when friends give me flies. enjoy !

EDIT– i’m very sorry, folks but the video has been removed and that’s a shame as it was very good. i’m awaiting the author’s response and will repost it back here if he agrees to share it again.

Catch & Release the funny way.

sent in by Lucian Vasies at troutline.ro from a recent fishing trip in Italy, this has to be my all-time favourite c&r selfie ever !

“I tried to make a photo and the camera was set at 3 sec. So in that time interval I was able only to fall down and not to make that classic photo with a big smile and my trout in my arms… “

Lucian Vasies c&r

here’s hoping we get to see many more images like this my friend !

Slint the Red Hooded

red-hood

by Jake Keeler at 20acrecarcass,
a guy who seems to have worked out the perfect proportions in making a great fly-fishing/painting/beer-making cocktail.

FREE AND NOT FOR PROFIT

via today’s just-pressed logo

this introduction note by Pete Tyjas caught my fancy as this topic goes hand in hand with the little 60 or so posts of the ‘brainwashem’ young’ series here on TLC designed to attract our younger friends to our passion. i can’t really figure out the ‘why’ aspect but i like the idea that each one of us does a little something once in a while to share fly fishing to someone else. sure, its quite possible we all might be eaten soon by zombies but on the other hand, we might defeat those ugly/stinking-sticky/disgusting creatures and get to continue on with our normal fly fishing lives. something tells me it’s probably worth doing.


” I’ve had some interesting conversations recently about the average age of fly anglers in the UK. It sounds like it comes in near to retirement age and has given cause for concern.

I have worked professionally in fly fishing for over ten years now and when I first started I am pretty sure these numbers were being quoted back then. Before this I have to be honest and say I had no idea.

It was a shock when I first heard this and it still is. Look at the scene in the US or Scandinavia for instance which seems to be booming. Fly fishing in these places is seen as cool, hip and trendy and works hand in hand with the whole “great outdoors” thing.

In the UK we generally don’t have access to big expanses of wilderness but we are lucky to have large areas of wild fishing where you might not see another angler. I count myself lucky to have one such example on my doorstep – Dartmoor.

Not everyone has though and it is where our reservoirs and put and take stillwater fisheries fill a gap. Small stillwaters also work well for the occasional angler who wants a few rainbows for the pot too.

But what of those of us whose lives revolve around fly fishing? We dream about it, tie flies when we can’t go, read books and enjoy magazines to fill the void. Are we a minority?

Not so long ago I was starting to think this but now I am not so sure. We have great schemes like Get Hooked which introduces youngsters to all forms of fishing, Mayfly in the classroom and numerous days run by the likes of the Environment Agency and Salmon and Trout Association. I wonder how many schemes like this were being run 30 years ago?

It seems to me that the dynamic has changed a little and there is a wide range of activities that parents take their children to. When I was younger I’d play football in the winter and cricket in the summer and do some fishing for carp too. That was about it. Nowadays, there are musical instrument lessons, horse riding, ballet, football, rugby amongst many other pastimes, along with tennis which also is enjoying a resurgence too. All along with the often-mentioned computer games.

Fishing has always been there in the background and sometimes the love for it is lost for a while and then rediscovered a little further down the line. It might be one of the reasons the average age of anglers is higher but since embarking on ESF I have met plenty of fly anglers in their 20s to 40s who fish hard, sleep in cars, chase the hatches and live for fly fishing.

It has left me far from despondent about the state of fly fishing and those entering it. We have to be honest and say it is a niche pastime but I have been greatly encouraged to see not one but two new TV shows featuring fly fishing in the last few months. One of those was on terrestrial TV too which is surely a positive. Kudos to TV execs for making such a bold choice.

So, we enter 2014 and I can’t wait to go fishing in the company of friends and hope I get the chance to bring more people into our great pastime.

Good fishing! “

Pete Tyjas


and that’s just the front page of this great online magazine. be sure to check out all the rest by clicking the logo above or HERE 

Catch and Release: Trout Dying To Get a Good Photo ?

via Bish & Fish from New Zealand

or simply put, if you hold and squeeze the fish in its vital organs you have a good chance of killing it even if it seems to swim off well. if you’re interested in releasing our little friends properly please take a minute to read the complete article by clicking either image. please share !

“So, you have landed the fish as quickly as possible to limit capture stress and you are about to pick up the fish and a get a few ‘grip and grin’ shots before release.
But, grip and grin, can all too often turn into grip and kill, and it is all down to where and how you grip the trout that can determine its survival.”

Anatomical drawing of trout
Have a look at the anatomical drawing above showing the main internal structure and components of a trout. Take particular notice where the heart is (red outline) – between and under the gills and liver, just above the Pectoral fins.
These three organs, heart, gills and liver are very susceptible to damage, although not always immediately obvious, unless the damage is very severe leading to immediate death. A fish subject to external pressure to the heart and other organs may swim away on release, but many die soon after.

The way it should be…

Good grip

if an analogy helps, hold it as you would a baby’s head, gently cradling with fingers spread out to widen the contact area while supporting it’s head.

click the logo below for more articles on Catch & Release
cr-175-w-copy

The Scottish Government: To reverse the decision by the Salmon Net Fishing Association of Scotland [SNFAS] to resume net fishing in the spring after a 14 year voluntary cessation.

please take just a few minutes of your time to read this and sign the petition. it doesn’t matter what part of the world we live in, fish don’t have nationalities and the same concerns are pretty universal. click the image to share your opinion on change.org 

thanks ! 

  • Online Petition by
    Ian Gordon
    Dufftown, United Kingdom

aQdmMyNqzIMTjAg-556x313-noPad

1. Wild Salmon numbers are at an all time low, particularly fish entering our rivers in spring. The voluntary agreement above along with Catch and Release by anglers has seen this particular group of fish , at best, “hold their own”! To begin netting at this time of the year again would do irreparable damage to this early running group/cohort collectively known as spring fish.

2. If we have no fish entering our rivers in the early part of the year then many full time jobs will be threatened as revenue from those early anglers is lost. In 2003 “Salmon Angling” was found to be worth £74 Million to the Scottish economy, supporting 2800 full time jobs, mainly in rural areas with extremely fragile economies. A shorter season will see those full time jobs become part time, attracting, not young families, but older people to do a seasonal job.

3. The support industry we have for salmon fishing in Scotland would also suffer; from tackle shops, to tea shops. Petrol stations, hotels, guest houses, B&Bs and not forgetting all their suppliers! Although we have no new figures, to the Scottish Economy, salmon fishing will now be worth around double that of the figure above.

4. We are not talking about a few nets-men and wealthy landowners here. No, we are talking about the jobs of 2800 ordinary people, their families and the longevity of an extraordinarily “Scottish” way of life; a way of life with so much, yet untapped tourism potential. To threaten the livlihoods of many for that of few makes no sense at all.

5. The Scottish Government will only support the netting of wild salmon when a “Harvestable Surplus Occurs” FACT. This is certainly not the case with Spring Salmon, or, some would argue – Summer or Autumn Salmon.

6. Calling a halt this madness will at least give those remaining fish a “chance” to spawn and in doing so producing the next generation, which hopefully, we will manage better than in the past.

More information and reading on the background to this petition and also points for online discussion, can be found here –

http://www.speyonline.com/petition.htm

cr-175-w-copy

– related articles

International Catch and Release Logo
fly fishing videos: Proper Catch and Release Methods
catch and release, well.

Size Matters and Life and Death

a lot of us tend to think that commercial fishing is the big nasty devil that’s ruining and depleting fish stocks around the world but that’s maybe just a convenient half truth.
bring this to our sport-fishing level, reduce the fishery’s scale to say, a smaller or average sized lake or river or stream and depletion and ecosystem destabilisation issues happen at an alarming, easily observable rate and it’s not just about fish. as sport-fishers we’re all aware of size limit regulations and a lot of us also know that they’re bunk. here’s why:

of course there’s always the fact that dead fish can’t take our flies, put up a fight, jump up and down, be the beautiful creatures that they are and even less reproduce.
it’s all about math, each fish removed makes for potentially hundreds of less fish in the future that will in turn not reproduce, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.
is it worth it ?

“Sometimes the fish talks back to you”

 ”Because none of the things are yourself, not really. The ideas come from someplace else. It’s like fish,” he says.

'fech off' bow TLC 22-9-13

What’s like fish? “The ideas,” says Lynch. “You didn’t make the fish. You caught the fish. Now you can cook it in a good way or a bad way, but that’s as far as it goes. The fish came from someplace else. And sometimes …” His eyes take on a faraway look. “Sometimes it talks back to you. Tells you how it wants to be cooked.”
big thanks going out to David Lynch for giving me the opportunity to use a crappy photo i was about to throw out. what strikes me is that we both have completely different thoughts on how fish interact with us, seems like most of mine say “get on with it and let me go ! “  interesting how they get cocky when they find out they’re next stop isn’t going to be a pan…

of ichthyological interest (and apart from the sassing), the pic above shows how fish eyes and olfactory thingies bulge out when in their environment, something we don’t see when a fish is held out of water. maybe the pic isn’t so crappy after all.

“And so with skill of the anglers the men circumvent the fish by the following artful contrivance. They wrap the hook in scarlet wool, and to the wool they attach two feathers that grow beneath a cocks wattles and are the colour of wax. The fishing-rod is of six feet long, and so is the line. So they let down this lure, and the fish attracted and excited by colour, comes meet it, and fancying from the beauty of the of the sight that he is going to have a wonderful banquet,opens wide his mouth, is entangled with the hook, and gains a bitter feast , for he is caught.”

little does it know it’ll be going back home in a few seconds without ever having left the water, but then deception is all part of the game i guess.

c&r TLC 6-9-13

title quote: the first written reference to fly fishing and fly tying- Claudius Aelianus 170-235 AD