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Thread: Understated Baitfish

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Cape Town
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    298

    Default Understated Baitfish

    Hi I had a good look at baitfish (mainly small mullet) swimming around in the shallows at Zandvlei and in the waves at Cape Point. some things I noted:
    * They do not appear to have a lot of flash (except when flashing their bellies)
    * The seem to adopt the color of their surroundings - over white sand they appear silvery-white, but moving over vegetation, they turn greenish-olive.

    I think one should be careful when adding color to these flies. A great material to use is supreme hair (light grey / translucent) as this stuff seems to take on surrounding colors much like optic fibres. Flash should be used VERY sparingly with this - literally only 2 strands.

    Finally the top of the fly (as seen from above) should almost camouflage the fly when in the water. Maybe some bucktail in white or olive-white.

    cheers
    w

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Cape Town South Africa
    Posts
    1,277

    Default

    Very good points Willie. I think we often are attracted to flies that are overly colourful or flashy, because they look like they should be good....... to US!

    Bob Popovic makes some very good points in his book, Pop Fleyes about literally breaking down baitfish to study their make up and colouration and how fish see them.
    They actually went so far as to fillet baitfish such as mullet, estuarine minnows and such, to work out their colours.....

    I think especially in estuaries, less is more, when it comes to flash materials. Out in the true saltwater environments in the surf and offshore, perhaps the flash plays a bigger roll. But in estuaries, where the natural bait is generally a duller colour, understated is the way to go.

    Have a look at your most succesful patterns in our estuaries:

    Olive/Tan Clousers - An Eastern Cape Standard.... Very simple, with not too much Flash.

    Brown/Olive or Grizzly Cockroach - A KZN Standard . An old pattern, but still one of the best fish takers around. Uses very little flash, maybe just 1 0r 2 strands.

    Your point of using fibres such as supreme hair really makes great sense as these are fibres which do tend to create that slight translucence and take on the natural colour of the surroundings....,.
    *** TO RIDE, SHOOT STRAIGHT AND SPEAK THE TRUTH ***

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Durbanville
    Posts
    5,126

    Default

    i also tend to agree with the toning down scenario. in the past i tied a fair bit of flash into my flies. also having a break and watching the small baitfish. tied some flies in browns and tan with much less flash and had a marked increase in chases. i think the fly was a tad big for the fish chasing but from seeing a little action to a chase everytime was encouraging. do you guys think these materials that glow in the dark have time to glow under the water? tied flies with some guys recently and one had flourescent chenile. helluva impressive when held to the light, then duck under the table. wonder if it really works or are we the ones being caught
    Behold the fisherman. he riseth early in the morning and disturbeth the whole household. mighty are his preperations. he goes forth full of hope and when the day is ended, he returneth smelling of strong drink and the truth is not with him. originator unknown.

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  4. #4

    Default

    I must see if i can post that pic off that mullet renier foul hooked at sandvlei,Very impresive colouring and I did tie up some similar looking flies but havent tried them yet. Was in mosselbay recently and got smashed in the surf not far from the people swimming on a salty bugger,now that is just white chenile and marabou but it woors,it doesn mimic anything,how do you explain that??
    I had that chenile that roland talks about and last night i tied my first (very impressive) squid patern and afterward i thought why didnt i put some off that in as i knoe the guys use light sticks to atract tuna and broadbill and they use big tjokka as bait with the stick inside,why wouldnt it work for snoek or bonnies and yellowtail who also feed on alot off squid.
    Photography Rules!
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Durbanville
    Posts
    5,126

    Default

    hi deewy
    good to have you back. that stuff you had was very impressive. we don't get the chance to see if it glows under water. maybe fish in the low light and have a torch to "light" the material and see what happens?
    Behold the fisherman. he riseth early in the morning and disturbeth the whole household. mighty are his preperations. he goes forth full of hope and when the day is ended, he returneth smelling of strong drink and the truth is not with him. originator unknown.

    my stuff.... http://www.flytalk.co.za/forum/album.php?u=824[/SIZE]

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