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Fly Fishing

fly-fishingFly fishing is mostly a freshwater method of fishing that is generally considered to be an art form. Most fly fishermen have their own particular techniques and many make their own bait or ‘flies’ by hand. The general concept behind fly fishing is that the angler makes his lure mimic the movement of an insect or minnow that would be the typical prey of freshwater fish. Fly fishing is effective when fishing for pike, bass, trout and bream, although the approach has been used to hunt most sport fish.

There are two types lures, known as flies, in fly fishing – the surface fly and the sub-surface fly. As the name suggests, the surface fly is designed to land on the surface of the water, and to trap those species of fish known as surface feeders. These flies should therefore be constructed of lightweight material, so they do not sink as soon as they hit the water. The sub-surface flies however are designed to sink, and are therefore constructed of heavier components. They resemble an insect’s nymph stage, and target those fish that inhabit the deeper levels of lakes, rivers and streams.Most flies in fly fishing are made by the anglers themselves, although some can be shop bought. There is a huge variety to the lures that are used in fly fishing, and many consider this aspect of the sport an art in itself. Flies are made to resemble certain insects as closely as possible, for example it is possible to see flies that resemble grasshoppers, crickets, beetles, mayflies, willowflies and stoneflies. Some flies are also designed to look like bait fish.When designing a fly, anglers must take into account the species of fish they hope to catch and the conditions in which they will be fishing. This is why most flies are highly customised. It is also important to understand how fish operate and what they respond to. In general certain shapes, movements and colours catch the attention of fish. For example if a certain species of fish tends to eat grasshoppers, they will respond to flies that are green and oval shaped, and that mimic the movements of these insects before settling on the water. If you are going fly fishing on a certain river or lake, it is a good idea to first observe the insects in the area and how they behave. When you begin fishing, your fly should resemble one of these insects as closely as possible, in both colour, shape and movement.

fishing1Fly Fishing Casting Technique

When fly fishing, casting technique is vitally important. Many anglers spend hours developing their casting, learning how to use their flies in the most effective and convincing manner. You should always try to make it look like your fly is a real insect, which has flown across the water before landing on the surface. Alternatively you can attempt to mimic a dead insect, floating on the top of the water. There are in general two components to fly fishing casting, the back cast and the forward cast. It is important to note that your elbow should not move during the cast, as this is what creates the snapping motion in the rod and makes the movement of the fly more realistic. When you are performing the back cast, slowly raise the rod until the line grows tight. The forward cast occurs when you snap your arm forward (without moving the elbow), and then stop it suddenly, casting the fly outwards towards the surface of the water. Most fly fishing is done while standing knee deep in water, however sometimes you may be forced to stand on the bank, if your presence seems to be disturbing the fish.