Artist Stephen R. Smith :: Trophy Fish Carvings

by Tony Bishop on October 22, 2007

From Moldy Chum comes this link to some really staggering carving and painting of trophy fish.


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Loop to Loop Line Connections

by Tony Bishop on August 29, 2007

The MidCurrent site has a very good video and step by step photos on tying the Perfection Loop, a must for loop to loop connections.

Once you have tied the loop the diagram nearby will show how to make a loop to loop join that will result in a perfect ‘figure 8′ connection every time.

Learn this way of making a loop to loop connection and you will never suffer from a break-off at the loop. Take the fly-line a few centimetres behind the loop lightly held between your forefinger and thumb. Take the leader just behind the loop in the same way. Then push the fly-line loop through the leader loop until the leader loop touches your fly-line thumb and forefinger and pinch them together. With your other hand take the end of the leader and thread it through the fly-line loop and pull it all the way through until just like magic the two loops form a perfect figure-eight loop-to-loop connection.

This method avoids the possibility of the end of the leader-loop flipping over the end of the fly-line loop, and effectively acting as a guillotine on itself, when the join comes under load.

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Bottom trawling damage seen from space

by Tony Bishop on August 23, 2007

If you want to see the damage bottom trawling can do, have a look at these photos taken from space – scary stuff. 

blogfish: Fishing seen from space

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World’s shortest fairy tale

by Tony Bishop on August 23, 2007

I know it is so old it wears a bear-skin and carries a club, but there must be one other person on the planet who has not seen it

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The Winterless North

by Tony Bishop on March 24, 2007

The Taupo region, central North Island, is best known as a winter (May – August) fishery. This is the time trout move out of the lake into the many rivers to spawn.

But this ignores the wonderful fishing that is available over summer, when the restriction on sections of most rivers to allow uninterrupted spawning are removed. It also ignores the fact that many fish enter the rivers to spawn all year round, although in nowhere near the numbers of winter. It is also true that there are far fewer anglers as well. A couple of weeks ago I fished the upper regions of the one of the most popular rivers and saw not one other angler, on a Sunday, and 7kms each way up and back.

The fish in general will be smaller than the winter on average – but big fish do lurk in deper pools. From Febuary on, browns move up river, some of these fish are really big.

There are also so-called ‘resident’ fish. These are fish that have moved up river to spawn and then stay upriver.

The only real annoyance is likely to be hordes of 8″ to 12″ fish, last winters crop feeding up before heading down to the lake in Autumn.

As an idea of the fish available, here are two photos of fish caught by my youngest son a few weeks back. The silver fish is a maiden hen on her way up to spawn. She would be close to 18″. The other darker fish is a hen that has very recently spawned and is on her way back down river. She would have been over 20″.

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Harvey Clarke has an excellent article on the stringent steps being taken to try and halt the spread of Didymo (Rock Snot) in New Zealand.

There is some good news in this story – a test on a chemical being undertaken on a small river is showing positive signs of killing Didymo, and with no apparent effects on other flora and fauna. The results will be out in a month. New Zealand is leading the world in research into this pest that is a world-wide problem.

There may be a bad news to go with the good though, there is a theory that Didymo may be spread by birds, especially wading birds. The consequences of this, should the theory be true, are simply not worth thinking about.

If you are an angler going fishing in the South Island please adhere rigidly to all the measures in place to restrict this problem.

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The Very Famous Fisherman’s Dirty Little Secret

by Tony Bishop on February 27, 2007

I recently wrote an article on Fishing Cheats, and it sure added to my email burden. Most were incredulous at the lengths some fishermen will go to, to massage their egos.

There were a good number of stories of cheats, swindlers, and con-artists of the angling persuasion, that people had encountered over the years.

But one comment on the fishing cheats blog-entry asked if the the cheat with the small rod was a famous fly fisherman. Actually he was not, but it did lead me down the memory path on some of my experiences with ‘famous fishermen’.

So I take a leaf out of the sensational magazines and tell a story about a very famous fly fisherman, and how the camera can, an often does, lie. [More]

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More Cheats and Fishing

by Tony Bishop on January 27, 2007

A little while ago I did an article on Cheats and Fishing, which outlined the lengths some fishermen will go, to get themselves in the record books, or a trophy for the wall.

There is another form of cheating, lets call it photo-cheating. We all know about holding a fish away from the body, and closer to the camera so the fish looks bigger. But a quick glance at the size of the hands holding the fish, versus the size of the head controlling the arms and hands manipulating the fish, expose this harmless enough nonsense.

Well I thought I had heard just about all the tricks known to man to fool a camera, and the people viewing the photo. Of course I had not. I was talking to a guide from Taupo the other night and he came up with a photo-cheat that is as remarkable in the simplicity of it’s execution, as it is in it’s complexity of planning.

My guide friend put the client on a nice fish, he caught it, beached it in the shallow water, and then took off his pack and pulled out a tiny rod butt section complete with small reel, laid it down beside the fish, and took the photo.

The guide was gob-smacked, “where did you get that rod butt?”
“Had it made “, said the client with no hint of embarrassment.

So this is where the maths comes in. A rough guide to the length of a hand-grip from base of the rod to the top of the hand-grip is around 25cm (10″) on 5 and 6 weight rods. The clients rod hand-grip was only around 15cm (6″) long, or 60% of the length of a normal rod.

So when the client laid his rod down beside it the fish looked 40% bigger than it would compared to a normal rod. A 45cm (18″) fish suddenly looks like 63cm (25″).

As those of you who have a smattering of maths, despite educators unwillingness to teach it, will realise this bit of photo-foolery will only work on small fish. A fish over 22″ would become 31″ – even our cheating friend might blanch at that – but maybe not.

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Great News for Great White Sharks

by Tony Bishop on January 3, 2007

The New Zealand Government has announced a complete ban on catching or selling of parts of Great Whites. This is great news for a fish that is coming under increasing pressure throughout its wide range.

Now if we can only organize some kind of world boycott of fishing fleets (mainly Asian) that are involved with the truly barbaric shark finning industry. Millions of sharks are being killed every year, in horrific fashion. The sharks are hauled on board, their fins cut off, and then dumped still alive back in the water.

Too sad, especially when you know that most Asians don’t like shark’s fin ssoup. It is primarily eaten at banquets for special occasions. Originally serving shark’s fin soup endowed great prestige on the host because shark’s fin was hard to obtain.

But now, supplies are such that hopefully the diminishing prestige gained because of ready supplies will kill the whole damned industry off.

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Flies So Realistic They Fool Flies

by Tony Bishop on January 3, 2007

I am awestruck at the fly tying realism this man achieves, so are real insects. It is a must visit site if you have any interest in fly tying, and even if you don’t.

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