As a perfect ending to the convention Dad and I went to a spot that Fritz
told us about and did a little more seining on Sunday (Father's Day in the
stream with my dad... not a bad deal-in-all). And to make it even better,
we did do rather well in coming up with the targeted fish (Fiery Blacks and
Rosyfaced Chubs). I took home a handful of each and they seemed to be
doing rather well (eating frozen foods and such) after a couple of days.
We also saw yellowfinned shiners (really nice read fins), some other shiner
with a less turned up mouth (have to look that one up), bluehead chubs, and
juv. sunfish, but left them all in the stream.
Interesting that so many fish could be in the same short stretch of stream.
At first it looks like how will all these "minners" live together. On
closer look, you begin to see that each one has a mouth-in-a different
angle from yellowfinned shiner (fairly high) all the way to rosyface chub
(very typical underslung chub mouth... seems to me even more so than the
bluehead)... and then you notice that the fiery blacks (a stronger looking,
more energetic, faster looking fish) is usually seined up out of the deeper
pools. So it becomes clear once you are in the stream with them that they
are all working a different part of the stream (high low, deep shallow).
Pretty soon, even the old fisherman is admiring the diversity.
Then a young family comes by and asks us what we are looking for. They had
been fishing for "perch" (they mean sunnies) and "horny heads" (which were
all pretty much big male blueheads). So my dad starts to tell them about
the really pretty looking fish that live right there in the stream. We
proceeded to talk through the whole NANFA concept... hobby, beauty of the
fish, conservation, education, recognizing what is right here in your own
back yard (or local park as was this case). We showed them some Fiery
Blacks and Yellowfinneds and they were appropriately impressed. While I
was used to explaining what I am doing and why, and proclaiming the beauty
of our local environment, I was really surprised to hear my dad chime in so
strongly. A credit to NANFA and to the hospitality of the group in South
Carolina, that he took up the message so easily. All in all a great
convention, a great weekend, and a great fathers day!
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