Insects and other foods the trout may be eating:
1. Blue-winged Olives
2. Little Short Horned Sedges
3. American March Browns
4. Cinnamon Sedges (Caddisflies) (Abrams Creek)
5. Green Sedges (Caddisflies)
6. Little Sister Caddisflies (Abrams Creek)
7. Pale Evening Duns
8. Little Yellow Stoneflies -Yellow Sallies
9. Eastern Green Drakes (Abrams Creek)
10. Giant Stoneflies
11. Light Cahills
12. Sculpin, baitfish and small crayfish (Imitate with streamers)
LIght Cahills - Emergers:
Light Cahill emerge in the slow water immediately adjacent to the fast water runs
and riffles in the surface skim. They get caught up in the current seams very
quickly. That is where you want you fly - in the seams. For those that may not
understand "current seam", that refers to the line of intersection of fast and slow
water. You want the fly just inside the fast water of the seam.
Short, upstream cast work best. At Perfect Fly, we have two versions of an emerger.
One is just a plain emerger with a CDC wing made to drift flush with the surface, not
on top of the water. It looks more like a nymph that just opened its wing pad than a
The other is similar but it has a trailing shuck that imitates the nymphal shuck. It
looks more like a dun with the shuck still attached than it does a nymph. The wings
are darker on the plain emerger because they have just opened and are still wet.
Either fly will work and trial and error is the best way to determine which one to use.
The Trailing Shuck version is slightly easier to see and preferred by many, but all in
all, the plain version seems to attract more trout as a general rule. It is slightly more
difficult to fish. The wings get lighter and finally, almost yellow when it becomes a
dun. This all happens within a few seconds.
Gulf Story Four:
In the late 1980s, a friend of mine purchased a new 46 foot boat. It was his first ever
twin diesel and he was just learning to dock the boat. He had run it very little and
wanted me to take him fishing. I left at midnight running by radar offshore from
Pensacola, Florida to the Steps, an area of the Gulf Southwest of Pensacola Pass
where the water drops from 300 feet to depths of 5000 in shelfs or what anglers call
steps. It's an area of very rough bottom and usually has some strong up dwelling
currents. At daylight we began to troll about half way down the steps.
Running the boat from the bridge, I spotted a disturbance on the surface that
appeared to be a school of tuna. We were trolling large softhead lures for marlin.
When we got closer to the area, I discovered it was a large Whale Shark with a
school of small Yellowfin Tuna around and under it.
For those that may not know, a Whale Shark is the largest fish species there is.
They get up to several tons in weight. They look a little like a giant stingray. They
feed on algae and plankton by filtering the water. The fish was about the size of a
large bedroom. They move very slowly and attract small fish which attracts larger
ones, of course. They don't seem to be disturbed by boats. Maybe they get used to
them because they live about as long as us humans. On second though, I doubt
that many boats ever see them since they are offshore species.
I don't know if it is the shade from the sun or other little fish that dine on their
parasites, but they always have schools of fish under them. I have only seen about
a dozen and most of them were offshore of Costa Rica. I know others that have
seen lots more of them but all in all, they are rare. I have never seen one without
several fish were around or under it. It's another Gulf of Mexico sight to behold that
few people have the opportunity to see.
At first, I continued to troll by the shark with the large softheads thinking it was a
perfect situation to hook a huge blue marlin but after getting a better look at the
tuna, I decided they were too large for a marlin to eat. We changed to small
Softheads on the outriggers and continued with the larger lures on the flat lines
thinking there could also be some large dolphin, wahoo, white or blue marlin, sailfish
or even larger tuna around. The first pass produced a small tuna on the right rigger
and within a few seconds, another one on the left rigger. Both Yellowfins were about
fifteen pounds or better. They were very easy to reel in on the 80 pound class line
from the chair.
Every time we set up and passed the Whale Shark, we would get at least one tuna. I
let them catch several and then moved on down the steps searching for the elusive
The steps are roughly half way down the continental shelf between Pensacola and
South Pass Lousiana. The area is currently covered with oil. I keep referring to
South Pass but there are actually three passes where the Mississippi River enters
the Gulf. South Pass is the most used one. It is about 25 miles up the river to
Vience. The oil leaks are about 50 miles offshore of South Pass.
I feel like the Whale Sharks will just avoid the Gulf when they discover they have run
into oil, however, that remains unknown. How would anyone know? They don't exist
in the Bering Sea (our only other major leak) and neither does any of the species of
fish that are in the Gulf, so there isn't much history to go by.
I can say this. If one did swim under or in the surface where oil exist very
long (maybe even just a few minutes) filtering the water, it would most
likely die very soon. There would be no question about that. As I pointed out
yesterday, so would the tuna.
The hearings that congress had lately put BP in a position to be able to blame two
other companies it sub-contracted work too. Although it appeared to be a case of
the blind (Congress) leading the blind (BP), it did reveal a few interesting things. It
revealed that many outright mistakes, errors and oversights caused the what is
going to amount to the World's largest environmental disaster ever in my opinion.
Bad wiring and a leak in what's supposed to be a "blowout preventer." Sealing
problems that may have allowed a methane eruption. Even a dead battery, of all
BP didn't have the guts to admit the other companies work for them and they are
totally responsible for their actions. I say that not in defense of anyone. I'm sure the
other two companies deserve whatever they get.
BP was also pressed to define what they meant by saying they would pay for all
"legitimate" damages caused by the spill. They didn't explain what they meant and it
is obvious they are already dodging the bullets.