Salmon movement from radio tracking and life strategy. Double and Single Spey casting problems.

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Fly fishing questions page 11.

Questions can be about any aspect of fly fishing, fly casting, casting instruction, fishing in Scotland or abroad, fly fishing courses, fishing flies, etc. The following is just a random selection of questions that have been send by readers and answered by Ally. If you have a question that you wish to ask please do not hesitate to complete the form.

Questions:

Salmon movement
Salmon strategy
Double Spey cast
Single Spey cast

Salmon movement

Question: If a fresh run salmon is in progress of moving upstream in a river, what does it do during the night - continue/ halt/ drop back /other....
You thoughts would be welcome.

Answer: Radio tracking evidence indicates that salmon may do any of the things that you mention, depending on the water conditions and the topography of the river. They do migrate mostly at night, especially in low water conditions but it appears that they will not ascend significant obstacles during darkness. The other major influence on their activity is temperature, if the water is cold, less than 6 deg C they are reluctant to tackle barriers and if the water is above 20 deg C they become lethargic, possibly due to a reduction in dissolved oxygen and to their general makeup which is adapted for cold water living and hence you will not find salmon in hot countries.

Salmon strategy
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Question: I am just starting to fish for salmon and don’t understand why salmon should enter a river between February and June if their breeding season is in the autumn/winter. What do these springers do till breeding starts?

Secondly I want to save your web site for reference but can’t.

Answer: Salmon as a species have an amazing survival strategy and returning early in the year is a trait of fish that will most probably spawn in the highest reaches of the river system. Evolution ensures that only creatures with the best strategies survive so clearly their habit works for them. Most of the time that an individual salmon is in freshwater is spent in a dormant state, conserving energy and avoiding risks. Only when conditions excite them are they likely to be caught beg when river conditions facilitate migration and they do make more migrations than most people realise because usually they move under cover of darkness unless the water is high. There can be quite large numbers of salmon present without any outward sign until they are disturbed eg by fishing over them.

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Double Spey cast
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Question: Question: I use a "Shakespeare traditional" 15ft #10/11.  On double Spey casting I do not get an adequate distance and have noticed that my "loops" are not as tight as they should be on my forward cast, the fly seems to go up into the air rather than travel and reach a better distance. Can you advise me on how to correct this and reach the longer distance that I'm looking for?

Answer: The Double Spey cast has a more restricted possibility of containing line in the D loop than the Single Spey so must keep the D loop taut and rely on shooting line. To make long casts with tight loops you have to learn to make the rod tip ring travel in a long straight line, using a side plane rather than an overhead plane will help you to do this.

Single Spey Cast
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Question: I have a 15ft, 10wt Greys rod, when Spey casting leader lands in L-shape, how do I correct this?

Answer: If the line and or leader did not land straight the rod tip did not travel in a straight line either. You are possibly using too much top hand and causing the twist by pushing too hard. Straighten out the tip travel and the line surely straighten!

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Copyright 2007 Alastair Gowans AAPGAI and FFF Master and THCI, APGAI. All rights reserved.