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  • July 31, 2012

    Bucket Biology: Stop Moving Species From One Body of Water to Another

    By Kirk Deeter

    Catching a "native species" trout is a big deal these days because, frankly, it's easier to find non-natives in most waters. Of course, most of that is our own, intentional, doing. Brown trout were planted in Michigan in the 1870s, and now most of us can't imagine fly fishing in a context that doesn't include browns. A wild brook trout is a precious thing in the Smoky Mountains, but in the Rockies, we can't eat them fast enough. Same too for the historic lake trout in the Great Lakes. That's a Pacific salmon and steelhead fishery now. But scientists are able to use lake trout from Lewis Lake in Yellowstone National Park (where there were no lake trout originally) to supplement stocks in the Great Lakes.

    Keeping tabs on any of this is enough to make your head swim.  Some wonder aloud if it's worth fighting the upstream battle to keep native fish populations around at all, or if we should assume that genie is out of the bottle.

  • July 30, 2012

    Live Video Feed: Brown Bears Feasting on Salmon

    By Tim Romano

    After Deeter's post last week regarding the safety factor while fishing around bears, and my impending trip to Alaska at the end of the week, I have bears on the brain. That's why when my friend sent me this link to explore.org and the live bear cam at Brooks Falls in Katmai National Park, I felt I had to share.

    I've been checking in on the bears the past few days and it's a pretty amazing thing to watch in real time. The info over on explore.com says, "You are watching exclusive LIVE footage from Alaska's Brooks River in Katmai National Park. Every year over a hundred Brown Bears descend on a mile long stretch of Brooks River to feast on the largest Sockeye Salmon run in the world."

  • July 27, 2012

    Whistles Are The Best Safety Gear for Anglers

    By Kirk Deeter

    I was fishing in Slough Creek in Yellowstone National Park yesterday, aka bear country. My group saw two black bears while on foot, and two grizzlies from the car (thankfully). We didn't have any problems because the bears knew we were around, and that's usually the key. Letting them know you're in their neighborhood will help you prevent most potential problems with bears.

  • July 24, 2012

    Video: Massive Mako Shark On the Fly

    by Tim Romano

    Warning: Video contains graphic language.

    Our friend Conway Bowman and his right hand man Captain Dave Trimble put on the Flying Mako catch and release fly fishing tournament every year in San Diego. The purpose of the tournament "is to promote sustainability, conservation and sound management of mako sharks and other apex predators.

    The proceeds from the tourney are donated to the Pfleger Institute of Environmental Research. This year entrant Mark Martin used his boat to guide friend and fellow angler Alex Beck to what looks to be a mako shark estimated to be between 500 and 800 pounds.

  • July 23, 2012

    Should Anglers Bring Dogs to Public Fishing Spots?

    By Kirk Deeter

    Sounds silly, but there are very few topics these days that divide our ranks into camps like the subject of dogs on the river. I know some people who wouldn't even think of fishing without their four-legged sidekick. And I know others who think dogs are meant for hunting, and it's downright rude to other anglers to bring a dog on public water.

  • July 20, 2012

    How Much Damage Do Forest Fires Cause to Rivers?

    By Tim Romano

    The 2012 drought and fire season here in the West will surely go down as one of the worst years ever, in terms of number of destroyed homes and acreage and money lost. And the scary thing is we're just over the halfway mark.

    What many people don't think about is what that destruction can do to the habitats of fish and game. While fire can obviously have positive long-term effects for overgrown forests, it can be pretty nasty in the short term – especially to rivers. And the damaging effects might last for years or even decades later.

  • July 18, 2012

    Fessing Up About Product Review Whiffs

    By Kirk Deeter

    As many of you know, we are now knee-deep in the trade show season; when new products for 2013 are being unveiled at breakneck speeds and the hype machine is running full throttle. I admit to having been made a sucker by that hype machine in the past. The benefit of hindsight and many months of actually fishing with some of these products has helped me realize that, in some cases, I probably drank a little too much PR Kool-Aid. So in the interest of clearing my own conscience (before I start gulping the next batch), I want to come clean on some cases where I whiffed.

  • July 18, 2012

    Video: Collection of Vintage Fishing Polaroids

    By Tim Romano

    A few years ago, while photo editing the The Flyfish Journal, a photographer named Sean Kerrick sent me a group of images he had taken of a lost collection of Polaroids he found at a gas station in southern Wyoming. Sean said the photographs were found while "fishing and exploring the Green River — high winds forced our crew off the water and back to the car. While exploring the backroads, we arrived at a tiny gas station that didn't even sell gas any more, just basic country style stuff: beer, cigs, gatorade, water and some random fishing and hunting tackle."

  • July 17, 2012

    Poll: What's a Fly-Fishing Dad To Do?

    By Kirk Deeter

    My family spent the past few weeks at our family cabin in Michigan with no television, no phones, and for the most part, no Internet. If we really needed to go online, we had to drive into town and park by the ice cream store to pick up a wifi signal. (I'm on the cone-a-day plan.)

    So why cut back on all the technology? There were brown trout right out the back door, and they've been eating flies (especially at night). Fishing aside, it's just plain awesome to sit in a rocking chair on the porch and listen to the currents roll by.

  • July 13, 2012

    Scientists Isolate Magnetic Cells in Trout

    By Tim Romano

    I ran into Rick Dickson of Freehand Fly Fishing at the industry trade show last year. At that time, his company was hedging their bets that magnets could up your odds of catching fish. The then anecdotal evidence convinced them to introduce a line of products that have direct contact of magnets to hooks and flies.

    Well, it seems now that they've been proven correct. A piece in The Seattle Times — adapted from ScienceNOW.com — describes how "scientists have isolated magnetic cells in rainbow trout." While the piece has a few typos and the author actually seems to confuse a rainbow trout with a steelhead, the science behind it is pretty intriguing.

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