Saturday 30 June 2018

Brown Trout colours and spots

A constant fascination for me is the variation of colours that the Brown trout in the local streams exhibit, even within a single stream the colours can vary from pool to pool.  The range of colours fascinate me as do the reasons for it. Not sure that I am really very interested in a scientific explanation  but my experience tells me that the more alkaline and richer in invertebrate the river then the fish are lighter with less vivid and smaller are the red spots. But I stand to be told otherwise.  The first two pictures show a trout caught from my local river last Sunday

The adipose fins of many show the most vivid colours .  This dark fish was caught from a small pool that is quite heavily shaded .  Perhaps partly the reason why the fish was generally dark?.  All the fish on the post whilst being from three separate rivers are all from within a circle of twenty miles diameter. The issue of age of the fish is a difficult one as in this stream the fish don't grow large  12 inches is a good fish 14 inches a potential seasons best .  I do get the impression that the darker fish are more mature . 

This fish below was caught from the same stream no more than 100 yds away.  It was an an area however of sand and gravel rather than the rocky pool the first fish was .

This fish was caught in the same river about a couple of miles upstream 

The fish was from a very small stream a few miles inland ,  better water quality and certainly less acidic , the stream rises as a spring out of limestone but does carry a lot of surface run of as well. The fish there tend to be a bit heavier and lighter coloured with smaller red spots although you do come across the odd darker fish, also the water  does have good invertebrate hatches .

The last is from a local chalk stream .  Whilst been a very rich stream it is not a large river with few deep pools and the fish whilst been fairly prolific do often reach substantial sizes .  Fish generally have smaller and fewer red spots.  

One interesting fact from the Wild trout trust website."Brown trout are one of the most genetically diverse vertebrates known. There is far more genetic variation present across British populations of wild brown trout than between any populations in the entire human race".  So it seems to me that you have possible genetic variations as well as local responses to habitat and water quality.  Also on a lighter note. " All fishermen know that trout get progressively larger after they have been caught!"

Thursday 21 June 2018

Fathers Day

Fathers day this year was pretty good.   Lunch was the last of the frozen sea trout from last year . Herbs , lemon and capers with just a touch of white wine....( Dont take many but do kill a very few every year ) 

Then after lunch down to the local river .  The mayfly were still about together with decent numbers of various different olives. 
Lots of small wildies came to hand from the shallow riffles where the broken water was well oxygenated 

Had three from this little pool .  When I arrived there was a kingfisher on that fallen tree.  It just screams Trout doesnt it 

Our little wild brownies are perfect and put up a great scrap on the three weight . I had  not used this rod for ages ,  I think I had forgotten how much I love fishing it .
R L Winston B2T 8ft 3 wt .  Perfect for small streams . 

I love these small Yorkshire streams , so picturesque so peaceful...Great day....

Tuesday 5 June 2018

In full swing

Up here in the north of the UK the “ Mayfly” generally hatch in the first two weeks of June ,   As we are a couple of weeks behind the seasons down where the southern chalkstreams flow . Well I am pleased to say that it is that time of year again and the mayfly hatch is in full swing and this year it looks like being a good hatch .  Some years the hatch is almost non existent or over so fast the fish do not get into feeding on them .   Last Friday after work I got to one of the local streams to find clouds of spinners doing their amazing dance and big fat ladies like this out in good numbers .  The trout were certainly taking them with enthusiasm.  There is something pretty special about a warm summer evening on a wild stream with mayflies hatching.

The stream is only small and runs across farmland .  and its pretty unkempt and even better its not stocked, it has a good head of wild brownies and a decent grayling population.  The extent of vegetaion around the river , in the river and even blocking the river makes for fascinating fishing and also gives plenty of fish holding lies.  Getting the fish out of them is an altogether different problem.

The mayfly pattern I use is dead simple and I have put it up on the blog once before so I won't bore you with it .  basically a simple variation of an ethafoam body mayfly .  All my flies fulfil a simple rule. easy and quick to tie,  I lose a lot to bankside trees. 

This picture is pretty typical  of the stream although there are also some pools that would over top my chesties if I was to show to much bravado . Its a lovely little stream and I have fished it for quite some years . Long time blog readers may well recognise it .  Its a very small club that controls it it is perfect .

That was Friday night but on Sunday I had arranged to visit Foston beck again ,  I had offered a day to a friend and also had just discovered that weed cutting is about to start.  That will destroy the fishing for a week or so and therefore the opportunity needed taking .  This season the little chalk stream has fished wonderfully . The wet winter has filled up the aquifers and it is running at a sublime level.  The weed is growing fast but I reckon that the cut could have waited a week or two.

The Wild brownies here are pretty but in a much more subdued way than the spate river fish I catch so often ,  more silver and less vivid spots mark them apart .  But also and by comparison the stream is stocked and the stockies whilst been bigger do not possess the same glorius colours.   

This is such a pretty stream though with thick ranunculas beds and heavy reed growth at the sides .  Also and unlike most chalk streams wading is allowed and in many places is an absolute requirement due to the overgrown nature of the stream.  It is this overgrown nature that is much of the attraction to me . I have fished some of the legendary southern chalk streams and for instance the Itchen whilst fascinating did not inspire me .  Mown banks and pristine trimmed Bankside vegetation is a little sterile for my rough stream Northern upbringing . 

Pretty isn't it....No mayfly though they don't like the hard bottom....

One for Hippo

 A blog I have followed for years is a Hippo on the lawn a recent comment on my blog shows two things , First it tells me Tom the writer was...