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PHWFF

The Hook & Hackle Company encourages support of those "Wounded Warriors" who have suffered physical and/or emotional injury as a result of their service to our great country.

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Rose River Farm, Virginia's finest private water trout fishing experience, has just gotten even better. Now in addition to over a mile of private water managed for Trophy Trout (all strictly on the fly and catch and release) they have added luxury rental cabins. As an introductory special ....

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The Hook & Hackle Company highly endorses this fine bonefish, tarpon & permit fishing destination. Our recent visit there exceeded our expectations many times over.

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Nora's colorful artwork just blow's me away! Best known for her watercolors, Nora has spent time painting on location all over the U.S.

 

I recently purchased a couple of prints from her Rich Pool Series which have become instant favorites!

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From time to time, we will feature different folks who are making a difference to fly fishing, conservation, outdoor art, helping others & so on. We welcome your suggestions for this column.


Peter C. Thompson, artist, writer, fly fisher & conservationist is our current feature.

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Wilderness North – Ontario Canada’s Premier Fly-in Adventure Provider!

Deep in the heart of the Northern Ontario wilderness lies an oasis for outdoor enthusiasts and anglers seeking a definitive Canadian adventure. Accessible only by floatplane, Wilderness North offers a haven for those who want to reconnect with nature.

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Fallfish, November 2013, Fish of the Month!

A Brief Note to Our Readers:

Arranged in taxonomic (scientific) order, this column has, with this entry, passed out of the realm of our fly rod glamour species, the Trouts and Salmons (and even the Pikes), and into a broader realm of generally warm water-loving species. To this end, we’ll jump into these habitats and species with both feet and begin with the Minnows.

“Minnows?!?” we can hear you exclaiming. Yes, minnows. “You mean there are 30 pound minnows?!?” Yup, there are and we’re going to lead into all this with two of them.

Fallfish

Semotilus corporalis

Local Names:

Chub, Dace, Shining dace, Chivin, Windfish, Silver chub, American chub, Mohawk, Corporal, Whiting

Average Size:

6 to 12 inches

0.50 to 0.75 pound

Distinguishing Field Marks:

(See the illustration.)

North American Range:

Map to the right shows approximate range in North America.

Diet:

Both young and adult Fallfish feed on both immature and adult aquatic insects, other invertebrates, and some fish.

Biology:

Fallfish spawn in spring, usually in May in small streams and tributaries of larger waters. In preparation for spawning, mature males carry stones upstream to build a nest mound. These mounds can be quite large, especially when one considers the average size of the builders, the largest males may make nest mounds some 5 to 6 feet in diameter and 3 feet high. A male and female simultaneously release eggs and milt up stream from the nest mound and the fertilized eggs fall into the crevices where they incubate for a period of about a week, then remain in the nest until the yolk sac is consumed and they swim free and begin feeding.

This should answer your questions concerning the nature of and reason for those conical stone mounds probably every trout angler has seen in his or her in-stream wanderings.

Fly Fishing for Fallfish:

It is more likely that Fallfish will locate the angler rather than the latter’s actively seeking the former. Fallfish are found in their eastern North American range in those clear streams, rivers, and ponds where trout, salmon, and Smallmouth bass are found. They are willing takers of all forms of the artificial fly and may sometimes be found in large concentrations. They are not strong fighters when hooked, and are seldom eaten, although the flesh is reported be of good quality.

We’ve included the Fallfish here because it is a common eastern minnow that can grow to 18 inches (45.75 cm.) and will almost inevitably be caught at some time by nearly every northeastern trout or Smallmouth bass angler. Anyone interested in teaching youngsters how to fly-fish will find the Fallfish a very willing target on which to refine their skills.

Should you decide to use Fallfish as teaching devices, your favorite light trout outfits and flies will work very well, and, as mentioned above, typically share habitats with trout and bass, so your young fly-fishing students may find themselves attached to one or more of those more glamorous species as an added incentive to their keeping a fly in the water.

Significance to Humans:

Minimal, but the fallfish forms at least part of the forage base for more traditionally desirable food and game fish.

Status:

Self maintaining very well and in usually large numbers through natural reproduction.