The Chub and I
by Herb S.
This was inspired by Chris’s excellent blog, “Fallfish!” One of the best features of Tenkarabum is the appreciation of all the fascinating fish species. Thanks, Chris!
In a fortune cookie: "There are many fish in the sea, maybe not a cute or as smart, but fish nevertheless."
Unfortunately, we don’t have fallfish (up to 20”!) in Michigan, but we do have River Chubs (Nocomus micropogon), and plenty of ‘em in our warm water streams. These babies grow to 12 or 13 inches and during the late spring breeding season the males turn a gorgeous pink-to-purple color. They’re a perfect fish for fly fishing beginners in that they’ll rise again if they miss a fly the first time and the schools are usually large. Very obliging! There’s a stretch of one stream I call “chub city” where I've taken students to get the feel of hooking rising fish before going on to other species. Guess I’m a beginner, too, because I get a still get a kick out of fishing for them. They, along with golden shiners, are great fun with seiryu tackle!
It’s very worthwhile to google River Chubs to discover their primary food is insects, they are intolerant of pollution, siltation and such and are one of the most common North American stream fishes. The part about their presence being an indicator of stream quality tickles me pink; it’s gratifying that “my” streams are loaded with ‘em. I hope yours are too.
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“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” - Benjamin Franklin
"Be sure in casting, that your fly fall first into the water, for if the line fall first, it scares or frightens the fish..." -
Col. Robert Venables 1662
As age slows my pace, I will become more like the heron.
The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.
Beware of the Dogma