With a buffet of food choices, why do fish pick just one? My answer to this question is to think “Wedding Cake”! Think about it. When the wedding cake is cut up and served, the cake is scattered over the table and selection begins. Dieters pick a small piece with less icing. The big feeders pick the piece with the icing on two sides, big in size, and decorated with a huge icing flower on top. The trashier, sweeter, and junkier, the better.
If the fish doesn’t see it, they won’t eat it. Fish see thousands of food sources at the same time. Tides and currents carry an abundance of potential food choices for the daily feeding buffet. They have just moments to make a choice before other fish make their choice or dinner is washed away.
What stimulates a feeding response from fish? There are several answers. The fish’s senses need to be enticed to trigger a feeding response. These include smell, sound, taste, touch, or sight. The angler needs to make their presentation appear to be the best and most rewarding choice.
Most fishermen practice a “match the hatch” strategy. Fly tiers scrutinize every color, detail, and size of the food item they are trying to duplicate. Ironically, fish do not see color. They do not have enough cells in their eyes to identify traditional color. They can see reflected light and bright colors reflect more light than dull shades.
The most important strategy is “Presentation”. If the food item appears natural, drifting, at the right depth, and not attached to fishing line, a bite is more likely. Size, shape/ silhouette, and movement are critical. If you present your bait, lure, or fly correctly, then make sure you have your net ready.
If the Wedding Cake is displayed poorly, made of ugly colors, has a bad odor, or does not look enticing, the wedding presentation will be a problem. Well -presented wedding cake will disappear quickly, with no left overs. If the fish is excited, attracted, and motivated by the bait, it will trigger a bite or strike.
Trashy and flashy colors will help to get the fish’s attention. Paint, dress, or attach materials that shine, flash, move, reflect light. Brite colors reflect more light so use orange, red, neon shades, and shiny materials when dressing your flies, lures, and baits.
Choice is important. Casting a tandem rig of flies requires the fish to select. If they pass up too much, they will be hungry.
Fish with the intent of catching a fish. Attitude is important. If you are not getting action, change your fly or technique.
For better for worse…take another cast!
For more Montana Grant, catch him at www.montanagrantfishing.com.