Between designing new flies for fly fishing for asp and testing them, my friend Hansi and I were chasing carp in some canals near by. Fair to say we managed to catch some fine fish.
Besides carp we also caught some nice asp again. In my last front page I was writing about two very important strategies on asp:
Imitating a school of baitfish and offering a high action fly.
Whenever asp are fixed on chasing baitfish coming in schools, there is nearly no chance to catch them by imitating a single baitfish presenting just one single fly. The key here is to imitate a school of baitfish.
Asp love to check for slow moving schools of baitfsh within a relatively small terretory. If other fish are running into this terretory, they easily can spook the slow moving baitfish. I think this is the reason why asp sometimes hammer into high action lures/flies. Simply they want to protect their hunting area to make sure the baitfish are moving nice and slowly.
Anyway based on my last front page I got some fine feedback from Erik. Erik said, that according to his experience on fly fishing for asp I was missing one more main strategy:
"Using a floating line and one piece of mono (26/00), simply throw in a small (10cm) slow sinking streamer. Don't do much but pay attention. Let it tumble through the water. There's nothing an asp like better than a dying small fish. It works wheter there's a current or not."
That really made me think, since I had very few situations, in which a slow retrieve worked best on catching asp. Those few situation were about presenting my fly in significant current. The current leaves much less time for the asp to react and that way I need less speed on my fly. But in no moving water I yet always needed pretty high speed on my flies or high action flies in medium to high speed.
I have fished a lot of different waters for asp. This was the same on all waters yet.
Besides that I have fished many canals and lakes with no current for perch, Zander and pike with flies, that were about 5 to 10cm matching well for asp, too. Only for perch, Zander and pike I almost never stripped like I did (and do) for asp. Yet within 30 years I didn't catch a single asp by accident here. In rivers (providing some supporting current) I did catch some asp by accident. But this wasn't many either!
I know that big asp sometimes like to take dead baitfish of the bottom. I have seen bait anglers catching asp this way. It never happened often though. In fact I only saw this happen very few times, while I see bait anglers every week here in my area.
Same with spinfishermen - I usually only see them catching asp when they present a high action (walking the dog) lure or when they have high speed on their lure. Those fishing for perch or Zander in slow speed don't catch asp.
I have seen hundrets of asp coming in high speed close to my flies and then turning of 1 cm before my fly. Somehow they seem to get a warning, when they are close. Yet only with high speed or high action I really could consistantly change this typical denying reaction into catching them.
Besides all that I am very interested in Erik's strategy. I will test it again during the next weeks in a specific spot where I see the asp moving over a sand bar. I will position my almost no moving and no moving streamers right in front of their nose and see what they will do (or not). Of course this strategy may be working different in Erik's waters. Often there can be quite differencies from one area to another one in regard of fish's behaviour. There is always something new to be learnt outside!
If you have made any experience on fly fishing for asp like Erik, please share it with us!
Great fly fishing week to all of!
All my best
Some pictures of last week...