Assorted Fishy Weirdness

Is there something in the water? Is there an outbreak of strangeness? Your guess is as good as mine.

Crotch lobster

Oh my. While some folks are hard at work designing new marine protected areas for southern California, others are shoving lobsters down their pants. Stealing lobsters isn’t particularly difficult — wardens say it’s one of the most common poaching …

Mysterious fish said to eat people in India

It’s called a goonch, and it’s a catfish that can get really big and is said to be eating people in India and Nepal. The story is strange. The goonch probably started down the path of eating people by scavenging bodies disposed in rivers in the area,…

Holy Lures!

One of the most amazing fishing tackle stories of all-time centers on a group of Franciscan nuns in Ohio who decided to go into the tackle business. Calling their lures “St. Peter’s Fishing Lures,” they manufactured and sold a line of 16 different …

Trouser Trout Marketing

The Levi’s “unleash your beast” campaign encourages web users to create and share with friends animated images of phallic creatures popping out of 501 jeans. The American Decency Association is calling for a boycott.

Posted by Tony Bishop in fishing humour, weird fishy stuff

Fishermen’s “Alternative Truths”

In today’s The Times is a nice article on fishermen telling ‘pork pies’ and a few hints on maximising the impact of these fibs:

Last month’s column on how an angler qualifies for the term “great” prompted a flurry of correspondence. Amid much else, it brought to light a telling quote attributed to Jerome K. Jerome, the author of the wonderful Three Men in a Boat. Jerome was talking not about great anglers, but about the qualities even a merely good angler needs to possess.

“Here is what he said: “Some people are under the impression that all that is required to make a good fisherman is the ability to tell lies easily and without blushing. But that is a mistake. Mere bold fabrication is useless. It is in the circumstantial detail, the embellishing touches of probability, the general air of scrupulous – almost of pedantic – veracity, that the experienced angler is seen.””…

The previous article on:

Quiet, unsung heroes are true greats of angling

is also a good read.

I wrote an article for a fishing magazine on this subject, but with a different slant, you might enjoy it:

Do Fishermen Tell Lies?

“I guess, at the risk of upsetting some friends and readers, that only politicians, car salesmen, and advertisers, have as bad a reputation for telling pork pies as fishermen; it is a widespread prejudice.

The picture of a fisherman, his arms spread wide, extolling the size of the "one that got away", has become an over-worked cliché. But under the cliché, beyond the ‘lies’, there lurks a possibility.

Fishing, by its very nature, nourishes the imagination, feeding it with a potent fuel of hope and desire…”

Posted by Tony Bishop in Articles and stories on fishing in general, fishing media

Charlie Craven’s Basic Fly Tying (hardcover)

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Charlie Craven is one of the best tutors of fly tying I have come across. I first came across his marvellous work in John Barr’s book ‘Barr Flies’ – Charlie did the tutorials in that book backed up by superb step by step photos. I think they set a new standard in fly tying tutoring.

Now Charlie has his own book out , ‘Charlie Craven’s Basic Fly Tying’.

Basic fly tying? I guess it is if you look at the flies he has chosen to present, but on every page are tips and tricks that I guarantee will have you smacking yourself on the forehead, and thinking “why didn’t I think of that.”

Anyone working through this book will have covered most of the ground needed to tie almost any fly. If anything Charlie’s photos and words have exceeded the standard he set in the Barr book.

I have been fly-tying for over 40 years, and I still learned heaps. If you are starting out fly-tying get this book, do not delay – so you do not learn the bad habits we old tyers have picked up. If you have a friend or family member just starting tying, buy it as  a present, they will continue to thank you for it for years to come, every time they sit at the fly-tying desk.

Cannot recommend it highly enough.

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing how-to, fly tying

Big and Biggest

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A New Zealand woman’s claim to a world fishing record has came with a  twist in the tale. Earlier this week, Sue Tindale of Auckland caught a bluefin tuna weighing 219 kg’s (483#), setting an unofficial world women’s record.

But she may have only held it for a matter of minutes, as another Kiwi woman also caught a whopper the very same day. Lyn Salvidge’s bluefin tuna weighed in at 223 kg’s (491#) – an astonishingly four kilos more.

"To sort of have two ladies weighing in a fish together was amazing," Ms Salvidge says. "So they put Sue’s fish up at 219 and I was looking at mine thinking oh, so I was really quite nervous."

Despite losing the record, Ms Tindale was not at the very least envious of Ms Salvidge’s four extra kilos.

"I just did the fish for myself and Scott anyway," she says. "And I just wouldn’t swap the adventure. And good on her if she beats me, it doesn’t worry me at all."

The two tuna very nearly beat both keen game fishers.

"I’d never felt anything so powerful," Ms Salvidge says. "I mean, I’ve caught marlin and stuff before, but never anything like this. This was like a horse."

"The bait got cast and just about instantly we were hooked up, and I thought ‘oh no.’" Ms Salvidge says. "This fish just about pulled me out of the chair and then the fight was on and it took three and a half hours."

The Tindales say it will be tuna for dinner every third night from now on. Of the 219 kilograms of tuna, 180 kilograms was cut off for eating.

It will be a few months before the US-based IGFA world record scrutineers verify both catches.

(Footnote: It can only be guessed at how many thousand dollars these two fish might have fetched on the Japanese market – but it is highly illegal for non-commercial fishers to sell fish in New Zealand.)

Posted by Tony Bishop in big game fishing

Joan Wulff: Advanced Casting Techniques

Midcurrent has the next video from Joan Wulff video casting series up on their site.

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In this next chapter from "Joan Wulff’s Dynamics of Fly Casting" DVD, Joan demonstrates several casting techniques for dealing with the challenges of positioning and presentation on a trout stream.

These "advanced" lessons — including changing direction, curve casts, and casts for weighted nymphs — are easily absorbed by even novice fly casters, but they’re a great refresher for experts.

If you don’t learn anything from Joan you must be watching with your eyes closed 🙂

Posted by Tony Bishop in Fishing Videos, fly fishing how-to

New Video: Joan Wulff’s Distance Casting Techniques

Midcurrent has just released the next instalment in Joan Wulff’s casting videos. This one is on distance casting.

“What techniques contribute to better timing and higher line speed? As Joan Wulff shows us this week in "Distance Casting," modifying shoulder and elbow position, shooting line on the back cast, and adding single hauls can easily help further your reach. At the end of the video she also demonstrates a handy trick for creating loops that will not tangle when shooting line while wading.”

You will also learn, as I did, that a ‘single haul’ is not half a ‘double haul’.

Posted by Tony Bishop in Fishing Videos, fly fishing how-to

What About That Hook

A while ago I penned an article posing the question, why don’t fish seem to take any notice of the hook hanging down below a fly? It is not like it is not in plain view.

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So I was intrigued to read this article which postulated…

“Hooks are not part of the trout’s developed searching or matching image. Therefore, in grossly oversimplified form, trout don’t care about the hook.”

Posted by Tony Bishop in fly fishing

Weird Fish, Ugly Fish, Ferocious Fish, Huge Fish…

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A real passion of mine is exploring sites that reveal the world under our world’s water, and I am continually surprised by the new fish I find, fish that almost defy imagination.

If you share my interest and want to view some truly weird, some truly ugly, some truly ferocious, some truly huge, and some truly other-worldly, head to darkroastblend.com and enjoy.

Posted by Tony Bishop in weird fishy stuff