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What to Fish for, and where, continued - Haunts of the Trout, Grayling, Salmon, &c.
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In the early spring months, ere the fly appears on the rivers, the glorious trout may be lured with the red worm. Fly-fishers affect to despise this method of fishing, as being childish, but it will take all their cunning and skill to succeed in capturing trout by its means ill low clear water. It is practised early in March, in shallow streams, where the trout arc on the look-out for prey. It is sought as a refuge when the waters are muddied and coloured after a flood. In the hot burning days of July, it enables the skilful angler to fill his basket, when ail flies would be refused. Worms may be used as a tripping bait, as if borne along by the stream near the bottom, or they may be used wilt a float, as described in fishing for the coarser varieties of the river tribes. In deep pools, under the shade of bushes and trees, they are used instead of natural flies by the bush-fisher. The tackle necessary for worm fishing for trout is similar to that used by ordinary bottom-fishers. The rod should be long, flexible, and pliant - one seventeen or eighteen feet will not be found too long, if not unwieldly and beyond the strength of the angler. The running tackle may be the same as before described. The foot line of fine gut, with the hook whipped on with red silk. The worm must be placed on the hook as before described, or by the excellent method recommended by Mr Stewart, who suggests that three or four small hooks should be tied on one thread of gut, one above another, and the worm hitched on them hi a serpentine form, like the serpent in the Laocoon, leaving the head and tail loose to play. This is no doubt an effective and attractive bait with large fish, but it scarcely compensates the angler for his extra trouble and risk of the worm breaking away when easting. Baiting with the double worm will be found nearly as effective and less troublesome. Different authorities argue in different ways with respect to shotting the line. Unless the worm is a large one, sinkers will be found necessary, particularly if there is much wind. Plenty of worms are indispensable; they are best kept in a flannel bag, which may be fitted with a loop to hang on a button. The casting of the bait is of great importance. I have had equal sport when fishing down stream, as up stream. The angler in this must suit his convenience and the state of the water. There must be no jerking of the bait; it may be sent forward, so as to fall lightly and athwart the stream, and be drawn gradually to the side. The line must be kept out of the water as much as possible. This is easier done fishing down-stream than up, and if the angler can keep himself out of sight, perhaps the advantages will be on his side, as trout are generally on the look-out at the head of the stream in the eddies, and scours for prey coming down. A bite is easily distinguished by the sudden stoppage of the line. In swift waters the bait is generally swallowed at once, in deeper and quieter waters the trout seem to play with it ere gorging it. It is difficult to know when to strike under these circumstances, and it is certainly better to wait until the bait has received one or two tugs than to be too hasty. When the water is still and clear, every artifice must be tried to keep out of sight. Kneeling will be found to be a good practice where the banks are open, and it is best to keep on the shallow side of the stream, opposite to where the trout generally lie. The angler must be up early if he wishes to be successful. A dry July morning, or one when the rain is warm, will be found suitable for the sport - the lull after a shower. In calms, the trout lie in the eddying rush at the head of the pools; when the surface is rippled by the wind, they lie at the tail of the pool. In deep streamy depths, behind stones, in eddies they may be found watching for (heir prey. In shallow water great care is requisite, as the trout are often at the very feet of the angler. The days to be avoided are those which are dull, heavy, and windy, and those which are clear with a westerly breeze. When August is advanced, trout begin to refuse the worm in clear streams. In flooded streams, where the water is discoloured, trout leave the deep current, and are to be found in the shallows, in the quiet water, at the tail of streams. Pools and streams in these circumstances should be fished round, and trout will take the worm during the whole of the season.

Trout may be taken by caterpillars, and two or three serews or fresh-water shrimps will often entice him. He may also be caught by spinning with the minnow.

The Grayling, which is not a common fish, will take a small red worm in slightly flooded waters. They will also bite at the grasshopper, and do not despise a gentle. A taking bait is to dress a No. 6 sneek-bent hook, on which a pennyweight of lead is east with light green silk, with a split straw on either side, ribbed with orange, or jellow silk. On the bend of the hook a real grasshopper is placed with the legs clipped off at the first joints. The angler should use a small float, and keep the bait continually on the move, one way or other. I cannot speak of the attractiveness of this bait from practical experience.

There are times, particularly in the early part of the season, when the waters are muddy and high, when salmon will bite greedily at worms and other lures of the bottom- fishing. Many anglers - and their opinion is entitled to every respect - are of opinion that it is unsportsmanlike to catch salmon with any other bait than the artificial fly. It certainly does not possess the charm that fly-fishing does, but at the same time it affords capital sport, when the fish will not rise at the fly. The tempting lob-worm may be used as a tripping bait in the same manner as that recommended for trout; the line must be leaded to keep down the bait, the salmon when hooked must be played and manoeuvred in the same manner as when fishing with the artificial fly.

One of the best baits for salmon is the small silver and black eels found in the sand on the sea-shore, known as sand-eels. An artificial one has been made of white leather, with a dark-coloured stripe down the back. Salmon may also be taken by shrimps, limpets, snails, but shrimps are valueless as baits unless in salt or brackish water. Salmon are also taken by spinning the minnow and partail. The process is the same as that described in the chapters on Trolling and Spinning for Pike.

Before I proceed, perhaps I had in this place better caution the tyro against the mischances likely to arise from an awkward use of the gaff-hook. This ugly-looking implement is, as before described, similar to a large fish-hook fixed in a handle, varying, according to circumstances, from IS inches to 4 feet in length. It is a useful implement enough if skilfully managed, which is not always the case. The spent fish should be brought to the side carefully, and if it is not possible to bring him in to a shelving shore, to the most suitable place, and the gaff should be slipped underneath the fish and carefully driven in beneath the pectoral fin by a sharp plunge, if you cannot insert the point beneath the gills. An excellent gaff is one which shuts, and have a handle which screws into two pieces. Such a one can be slung over the shoulder without danger, and is also useful for clearing weeds and other obstructions in the way of line, bait, and hook. Those anglers who reside, or are staying near the sea-shore, will find a few suggestive hints for the employment of their time, and the use of their bottom-tackle, in the chapter on Sea-Fishing.

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Pictures for Bottom-Fishing

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