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Thread: Bead head prince nymph fools another carp. Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
08-24-2002 10:36 AM
pmflyfisher Yes, that may be appropriate. The carp I caught yesterday in the river was in a school of them which I could see feeding by their flashes in the current. This rivers water is a little discolored, at first I thought they were trout or possibly summer steelhead. Could not get them to come up to the steelhead spey patterns put the bead hex nymph on, got it down to them, after 3-4 casts in their zone got then to take it. Decent fight for a little while since the current was strong their, but the 5 LB carp was no match for the 13 foot 7/8 weight spey rod.

Banked him quickly and released him.

P.S. There was a big caddis fly hatch (tan color) coming off which is what I think they were feeding on. Put the tan nymph on and they went for it.
08-24-2002 10:16 AM
Quentin Thanks PM,

I'll give that a try. I'm hoping some new patterns will fool those wary fish! Hmmm . . ., maybe a carp fly swap is in order?

08-23-2002 04:50 PM
pmflyfisher Hey carp anglers,

I nailed another nice 5 lb red tail great lakes carp today on a bead head hex nymph pattern used extensively out here for steelhead and salmon. The instructions for the pattern are in the spring steelhead swap thread.

Put "bead head hex nymph" in search engine and you should find it. This is a version I constructed but it is turning out to be a great fly for trout, salmon, steelhead, bass, and Mr. Carp. There is a picture of it also with the other flies from the swap.

Try it you will like it and so will the carp.

08-23-2002 08:34 AM
Quentin Matt -- it's not your imagination! That's exactly the type of behaviour I've seen in the pond where I've had my best success.

After I caught or hooked a few fish on the easily accessible side of the pond (over the course of several trips) I found that I couldn't catch a fish on that side of the pond no matter how carefully I stalked them or presented the fly. It probably didn't help that a few of the fish were sporting new lip ornaments. Out of frustration, I decided to try the other side of the pond even though the shore is extremely muddy and the water is only inches deep for several feet out from the shore. I hooked 4 fish that day! Of course, I had to walk ankle deep in the malodorous goo in order to land and release the fish (hence the mud bath) and I almost lost my sneakers more than once. I'll try the muddy side again under the guise of scientific research, but this time I'll wear my scuba boots or maybe even my waders!

08-23-2002 07:17 AM
Mattb Another frustrating thing I've noticed, which I keep trying to tell myself is just my imagination, is that once spooked the carp will often stick around, but in such a way as to make a presentation to them impossible.

there's a large bush right on the shore of the pond I fish with mud shallows on either side of it. When I first get there the fish are usually on the right hand side of the bush, but after I cast to them a few times, they'll move over to the left. If I go to the other side of the bush they'll stay for a couple more casts and then go back to the right.. This can go on for a few switches before they eventually head for deeper water.

Another frustrating one is that once spooked the carp will often continue feeding, but they'll set up pointed straight out into the pond, so it's very tough to get a decent presentation without lining them.

Anyone who thinks trout are smart compared to carp hasn't done much carp fishing.
08-23-2002 03:29 AM
Re: Not only carp but .....

Originally posted by Adrian

On first seeing the fly the fish go crazy for it and there's a lot of competitive presure and its hard to miss a strike. Next time through, the interest seems to drop by about 50%. After a couple more presentations you can almost bop the fish on the nose and they'll ignore it. Not scientific by any means but interesting.
Well I think we can add bluegill to this too, because I have been experiencing this very thing since I started flyfishing about two weeks ago . It's like you described it to a "T".
08-23-2002 01:05 AM
Not only carp but .....

There are lots of species amongst our scaled friends who seem to 'shut down' after one or two fish have been taken from a pod. Smallmouths, Mutton and Mongrove Snappers, Mahi Mahi and Barracuda come immediately to mind - not always but frequently enough for it to be the rule rather than the exception.

The main exception here was fishing dries to the smallies which they seemed happy to rise to all night!

I've read about the Carp secretion also. I was wondering if there was also some kind internal effect - maybe a hormone release surpressing the "attack" response. I conducted a samll experiment on a couple of pods of smallmouths last week-end.

On first seeing the fly the fish go crazy for it and there's a lot of competitive presure and its hard to miss a strike. Next time through, the interest seems to drop by about 50%. After a couple more presentations you can almost bop the fish on the nose and they'll ignore it. Not scientific by any means but interesting.
08-22-2002 11:55 PM
Quentin I read about the carp secreting the "warning" chemical too. What baffles me is that when they do return and resume feeding they either stay just out of range or, if I can reach them, they swim away from the fly and then start feeding again. Even if I go back a few days later I can't seem to get them to hit. The guy at the fly shop laughed when I told him that I needed to find new fishing spots because the carp seemed to wise up to what I was doing. He said, "Nah, they're stupid. Now, trout are a smart fish." I have to disagree with the first part of that statement!

Let me know how you make out with the woolly bugger. If they won't eat yours they probably won't eat mine either, but we can certainly swap flies and give it a try. It may be an interesting experiment.

08-22-2002 09:50 AM
Mattb I've started to notice changes in the carp's behavior after I hook one too. I read in flyfishing for carp that they actually excrete a chemical into the water when stressed that warns other carp and even some other fish. That explains why they'll abandon an area for quite a while after a fish is hooked, but not why they'll abandon it for good.

Thanks for the offer of the flies Quentin, but I think I have all the necessary ingredients. I'll give it a shot tomorrow with one and see if the colors I have are close enough. If mine don't work out for me maybe I'll take you up on the offer. Maybe I could offer a couple of bead head prince nymphs in trade?
08-22-2002 09:05 AM
Quentin Lately I've been putting it right under their noses or casting ahead of them and giving a little pull when they get close. Haven't had any "follows" since much earlier in the season, when they actually did follow and eat the fly even when it was well above the bottom.

08-22-2002 08:56 AM
Mattb Thanks for the pic Quentin, I'll have to tie a couple up tonight for lunch tomorrow. Are you getting fish to follow and strike, or are you just putting the fly right under their noses?

I think that an hour at a time seems to be pretty ideal for the size of the pond I'm fishing. After an hour it starts to get tough to find feeding fish and you get the feeling that even the ones you do see are on to you.
08-22-2002 08:53 AM
Quentin The fly shown above is one of the older ones. I don't make the tail quite as long when I tie them now. The body is brown wool yarn. The hackles that I use are sort of "two-tone", with the brown color on the shiny side and a tan/beige color on the other side. I wrap them with the brown side facing the eye of the hook. The tail, body and hackle (shiny side) are almost the same shade of brown with just a hint of copper. I'd be happy to send you a couple if you'd like.

One thing I've noticed: The carp stop hitting the fly after I've hooked or spooked a couple in any particular area, even if I return a few days later. I usually need to move to another spot to get more hits. I think the same carp return to the same places to feed every day and they quickly learn to avoid my flies. I can't help but wonder if they even warn the other carp in the area! They keep on eating, but either stay just out of casting range or swim away if I cast near them or they come upon my fly, line or leader. Sometimes they just swim slowly towards me or sit there watching me, even when I do my best Chuck Berry "duck walk" when I approach the water!

Also worth noting is that this fly has only worked in ponds and lakes so far. The carp in the river won't touch it.

08-22-2002 08:19 AM
Quentin One take in an hour is definitely a good outing. FWIW, I fished for about 6 hours to get the 4 hookups, and I've had several looooong days on the water without even one take! Here's the fly I've been using:
08-22-2002 06:20 AM
Mattb Quentin, I definitely still skip the occasional sunnie across the surface with a panic strip strike at what I'm sure is a carp.

That's great that you hooked 4 on the wolley bugger, I think I'll have to give it another shot. I consider one take in an hour(lunch) a good day, but maybe I could do even better with the bugger.What shade of brown are you using?

I like the 5 weight, especially for some of the shorter presentations, but with a big fish on the lack of a fighting but is really a pain. I've been considering bringing the 8 wt out for just that reason.
08-21-2002 04:40 PM
Originally posted by Mattb
There are a ton of sunnies and bluegill in the pond I'm fishing, and I've found that with an unweighted nymph they will often take the fly before it gets into the carp's strike zone, so I had to go to the weighted flies.
:hehe: How many sunfish have you skipped across the surface because you set the hook on what you thought was a carp? Or maybe that doesn't happen with the 5wt. I've had it happen a few times with sunnies and tiny bass while using the 9wt. Always cracks me up. Of course, it usually spooks the carp so I'd prefer that they leave my fly alone.

Congrats on the success with the BH Prince. I tied up a reasonable facsimile but havent used it much. I didn't have goose biots or gold beads so I substituted duck quill barbs for biots and wrapped some fine brass wire into a ball to make the head. I tried it for a few casts but the carp didn't seem to want it. Then again, they weren't cooperating much that day so maybe it wasn't the fly. Guess I'll have to do some more testing .

I fished a shallow, mucky pond today and hooked 4 carp (landed 2) all on the brown woolly bugger. They seemed pretty sluggish too, although one of them had enough energy to give me a mud bath while I was trying to land it. I was using the 5/6wt and only one of them came close to the backing. All were in the 30" range, perhaps 8 - 10 lbs. I use a heavy leader (20# fluoro) so I can really stick it to 'em. When they do run that little reel makes some scary sounds !

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