Q and A

I occasionally receive questions from readers of the web site. Here I post Questions and Answers that may be of interest to others. Click on the A to view my answer. If you have a question please email info@fishermanscoast.com.
  • Do you think it’s worth adding eyes to flies? Does it make a difference? A.
  • Years ago several of us outdoor writers were on Long Cay, Bahamas and I asked Al McClane why is that for years on a specific tide bonefish will flood onto a flat. Then the numbers begin to diminish until after a while you rarely see one there--and that situation might last for years before the return. Al said bonefish graze the flat (like cattle to a pasture) until it is no longer economically worth while for them. I think many flats fishermen would be interested in this observation. A.
  • In the late 1940's I fished a lot for smallmouths on the Potomac about 50 miles upriver from Washington, DC. Casting  a small plug about the length of your ring finger and 3/16 ounce weight. Bass jumped on it. For about four years the lure was terrific--then it became just another decent lure that the bass often ignored. I watched the same thing occur with plastic worms, then Mister Twister-type lures, then Rapala, and so on. The same thing has happened in the Keys with tarpon and bonefish. I can think of many other examples of this pattern with many different gamefish in fresh and saltwater. What do you think causes this? A.
  • Can you give me some information on the type of flies I would need for the Pine Island area of Florida? I tie my own flies and have never fished in the area and am trying to get information on the materials that I would take down for my trip. I want to fish for snook, trout, redfish and anything else that might be exciting on a fly rod. A.
  • I’ve had a number of questions on career choice advice. A.
  • Do you fish Sanibel much during the summer and do you think the beach renourishment will have an impact for this years summer snook fishing? A.
  • What tides are best for fishing on the beach? A.
  • What is your favorite bonefish fly? A.
  • What tippet do you use when fishing for snook? A.
  • Is it more important to cast far, accurately, or quickly when sight fishing? A.
  • What’s the best way to handle a fish for catch and release? A.
  • How much backing should I have on my fly reel for saltwater fishing? A.
  • I’m just getting into saltwater fly fishing, what fly rod should I get to start? A.
  • When I was on a recent trip to the Everglades, my buddy was catching a lot more fish than me when we were casting to mangrove shorelines even though we were using similar flies. Any suggestions? A.
  • Do you have a specific leader that you use for each different gamefish? A.
  • I often get this type of question: I’m going to (fill in the location here) for Caribbean vacation. Is it worth taking a fly rod on the trip? What fish are there to catch? A.
  • I'm new to fly fishing for striped bass and bluefish, having recently moved to New England. I've noticed that a lot of the flies used here are either heavy, like big clousers, or wind resistant, like poppers. Do you have any suggestions on casting these big flies? A.
  • What color sunglass lenses do you prefer for fishing the flats? A.
  • How full do you tie clousers, deceivers, or other favorite baitfish patterns? A.
  • Do you prefer gelspun or dacron for backing? A.
  • Do you use barbless hooks? A.
  • What rod do you recommend for bonefish fishing? A.
  • What camera gear do you use? A.