Need help with specific feeding fish

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Jaapie
Posts: 69
Joined: Mon May 19, 2014 3:44 pm

Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Jaapie » Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:11 pm

Hey guy's,

Desperately need to plug into the brains trust here -

Been fishing for the past few weeks and have come across a couple of situations where an actively feeding fish in a run just seems to ignore all offerings.

We're fishing central South Island - fish is in a run/riffle without too much flow and actively moving side to side eating.
He is obsessed with something and every now and again turns and chases and eats something off the top before eating again mid water and then repeating the 'dry' eat.

Initially I was convinced it was willow grubs as it was along willow trees, but I tried them and got refused.
The closest I got to any interest was a parachute Adams in size 18 - he drifted under it and eyeballed for a second and moved off to feed again.

Tried most flies, including very small nymphs (20's), but bugger all.

Never scared the fish at all, so not poor presentation - he was still eating when I left him with tail between my legs.
Watched him for the best part of 40 minutes and sneaked down from him to see what I could see/scoop in the river, but found nothing obvious. I love a challenging fish, but really never figured this one out - be grateful for any info if you've seen this or can suggest what to try differently.

Tight lines for everyone in 2018 - the conditions for the South Island have been amazing these last few weeks, although the levels are pretty low in some places.

Cheers.



Maniototoflyfisher
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Apr 01, 2017 6:30 pm

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Maniototoflyfisher » Wed Jan 03, 2018 4:27 pm

I would be trying a #16 CDC emerger - often works when you can't see what they're taking. Saying that I still get fish that won't take my offering. I've never fished willow grub feeding fish but the episode on PureFly a while ago showed many casts were often needed to get a take - they had 2 similar patterns tied 6 - 8 inches apart - one floated and the other sank a inch or two - so don't write off the willow grubs !



SuperJack.10
Posts: 63
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:06 pm
Location: Wellington

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by SuperJack.10 » Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:07 pm

If it’s “chasing” a dry it could be more likely to be an emerger struggling to get free, i.e. the fish is chasing to take it before it takes off. The small parachute Adams would be a reasonable fly for that, which might be why he had a look. I had good success recently with a #18 CDC comparadun on fish that were steadily rising and refusing parachute Adams and also my usual hares ear emerger.

http://www.flyshop.co.nz/product/emerge ... radun.html
http://stusflyshop.com/browse-by-fly/dr ... ger-brown/



canuck
Posts: 61
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 1:26 am

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by canuck » Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:00 pm

Tippet size/ type?

Just a thought, still getting away with 4X here but...

Brown mayflies have been reliable.

Canuck



Johnno
Posts: 612
Joined: Sat May 10, 2014 3:01 pm

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Johnno » Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:16 pm

Small brown possum bodied unweighted Soft Hackle ribbed with fine gold wire and one wrap of dark blue dun hen hackle.
Size 16. Or try two wraps CDC for the hackle.
Fish it upstream no indicator on 5 or 6X.
That’s it.
Very light, very soft and it MAY do the trick.....

Or not. :D



Jaapie
Posts: 69
Joined: Mon May 19, 2014 3:44 pm

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Jaapie » Thu Jan 04, 2018 3:12 pm

Hey thanks for the replies fella's.

An emerger might be the answer. Honestly never thought to try that route.
I have tied up a lot of emergers a la Chris Dore articles and patterns using Deer hair and snow hare, but these looked out of place for this fish.
Just haven't had the confidence to fish them oddly enough - probably missing out big time <sigh>
Even when I sneaked downstream for a good look I didn't notice anything emerging or shucks on the water....

The CDC might be the key though or as Johnno mentions above with possum that 'breathes'.
Be right back at the fly tying table and see what we can come up for the next time.

I dropped right back on the tippet interestingly enough and hook size.....but nada.

At any rate appreciate the info guys - many thanks.



Andy W
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue May 13, 2014 2:01 pm
Location: Christchurch AKA Quake City

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Andy W » Fri Jan 05, 2018 7:15 am

Willowgrubbers can be the fussiest of feeders, so check your offering matches what is coming down current, including its position in the water column. As there is not a lot of flow it is getting a good chance to inspect the fly. An 8mm body is about as long as you want to go.

As the others have said – consider the emerger too. A trout locked onto cased caddis can exhibit the same behaviour as a willowgrubber. I have seen it time after time – catch a fish on your #1 willowgrub and you think the next is also feeding on them, but no. After 2 or 4 changes an emerging cased caddis does the trick. Even then – getting it close enough when a fish is voraciously feeding is half



Jaapie
Posts: 69
Joined: Mon May 19, 2014 3:44 pm

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Jaapie » Sat Jan 06, 2018 11:03 am

Thanks Andy.

I saw first hand on one of the rivers fish feeding like things possessed on Horn Caddis and nothing else.
Moving side to side and rejecting most things until the right fly came through.

It's been an interesting trip this last one with the amount of rejections - always believed a good cast and presentation would get the fish in 90% of cases, but obviously these fish are getting smarter or me dumber <grin>

Really appreciate the input guys.

Just out of interest, what are really good emerger patterns that could cover in this situation?
The ones SuperJack has linked look great, but are there any others?
I've used Bob Wyatt's emergers before which have been great on the stiller water, but I don't think they would have done it on this fish.

Thanks for sharing all.



Erik Moller
Posts: 43
Joined: Wed May 14, 2014 8:03 am

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Erik Moller » Sun Jan 07, 2018 12:51 am

Klinkhammer in the right size and colour, maybe.
A friend of mine did well in a caddis hatch with a Klink with hare dubbed body.



Andy W
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue May 13, 2014 2:01 pm
Location: Christchurch AKA Quake City

Re: Need help with specific feeding fish

Post by Andy W » Mon Jan 08, 2018 6:09 am

I have yet to find the perfect emerger – is there such a thing? Currently using CDC Emerger, Klinkhamer and a soft hackle using either possum or quill body with a couple of turns of partridge.

Mine is to match our local mayfly D.Lilli. Johnno’s sounds remarkably similar.



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