Page 1 of 1

Tenkara fishing, the cat and the birds

PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 12:03 am
by dwalker
Two months ago I had never heard of Tenkara fishing. I recently acquired two Tenkara rods, a 12 Iwana and a week later an Ayu. Thus far they have been a hoot.

I have one nice resource close to home. A small stream flows along my front yard making it easy to go out and practice casting where I have an open area and a little down stream some overhanging trees to practice becoming aware of the rod length to avoid the tree limbs and trying different types of casting in close quarters. The stream is only about 6 feet across so no worries if I snag on the something. I have also landed several small fish, mostly small bass, and I've learned that accuracy in landing the fly is key. You have to hit close or the fish just ignore you.

I also have a constant fishing companion. I had hoped it would be my son but it is the family cat who has taken the most interest and as long as I am on the stream he never leaves my side. Or rather the stream bank near where the fly is drifting. Even when they don't strike you can often see the fish or more often minnows following along. His excitement spikes when I actually hook a fish and he is first to get close to the action.

Sunday evening I went fishing on a local river about six miles away. I was wading the river to fish. It was dusk when suddenly I was surrounded by little birds flying around, a whole flock of them, maybe 20 birds, curving , banking, diving. I felt like I was in the middle of a dog fight. Several times they hit the line, or the rod. One actually brushed my face nearly knocking off my cap. I was a little concerned one would take my fly. The dive bombing kept up and I moved to the other side of the river and down river where they were not present. I am not sure what type of birds they were. I thought at first they may have been bats but they were birds.

I returned to a fish near a fallen tree , where I had earlier hooked a fish who did a nice job weaving my line around several submerged branches of the tree, and hooked 3 fish one right after the other. As soon as I released one fish I caught another after only 3 or 4 cast. Just what I was hoping Tenkara fishing would be. Not big fish, 7 - 10, mostly small bass and I think one black crappie. But still fun.

This evening I fished on my little home stream again. Hooking 4 small fish. Again at dusk some little birds started flying around me. This time there were only a few of them. The cat was quit excited and I was quit concerned when suddenly one of the birds was on my line flying around in circles like one of those little model airplanes you can fly on the end of a string. I was starting to hand line him in and release him when after about four circles the line and fly drifted down to the ground. Whether the bird had nabbed the fly or just got caught in a loop of line I don't know. I am wondering if they are attracted to the fly when I cast or if its just coincidence. Anyway after the bird was loose they moved on and I fished for another 30 minutes without them flying about. And the cat had a different kind of story about the one that got away. :)

I've never had this experience with birds before along the river. Though about 10 years ago I was on the outer banks of N.C. when a sea gull got tangled in my son's kite line. I quickly reeled him in because he was getting more tangled as he flew about . He gave a good effort trying to bite me as I tried to get him untangled. I got several loops of line off him and I finally had to cut the line to get a final loop around his wing loose, and as I pulled the line as he continued to either try to fly away or attack me the line came loose. So I was happy he didn't fly off with line looped tightly around one of his wings.

Thus far Tenkara fishing is bringing me new experiences with catching fish, birds and a new loyal fishing companion. Maybe I will get lucky with another unexpected experience hooking a larger than expected fish like bwhite in the previous post.

later...

David

Re: Tenkara fishing, the cat and the birds

PostPosted: Thu Jun 24, 2010 10:28 pm
by Daniel @ Tenkara USA
Thanks for the story. It put a smile on my face, I just had a similar experience with a bat that got on my line for a few seconds. I didn't want to handle a bat, so I'm very glad it was like one of those fish that "auto releases". I'm sure the cat was yelling all kinds of "tips" for you not to lose that bird..."tension, tension...a little slack...net..."