Part One hundred sixty-six
By Richard D. Zieger, O.D., Lamoni, Iowa
Archive of Panfish
Went out one evening this summer to try to catch my supper and get
away from everything that was happening. Had helped three people
move into new houses in town and was tired.
Walked into a pond that I had not been to for a while. Was about five
in the afternoon and air temperature of about 80 degrees. Good thing
was that there were trees around for shade.
Put on one of my favorite flies and started casting. The first five fish were
bass, all about 10 to 14 inches. I move to another spot and tried again.
I did catch a few crappie and a nice bluegill. Then something hit that
took a while to land on the 3 wt I was using. Turned out to be about a
4 lb bass. The odd thing was that the bass had some line coming out
of its mouth that was not attached to my fly. When I removed the fly
and looked in its mouth, there was a plastic worm.
I removed it and returned the bass to the pond.
I continued to fish the area. And did catch a fair number of crappie and
gills. Strangely enough 3 out of 4 fish were bass. I have never caught so
many bass so consistently that were all about the same size. I had tried
seven or eight different flies by now and the bass hit them all.
After about an hour of fishing I decided to head toward the dam area
of the pond to see what I could catch. As I walked along I would stop
and cast. The upshot of all of it is that I caught four more bass along
the pond bank that all had plastic worms in their mouths. I did remove
the worms and put them in my pocket.
Here is where my orneriness kicked in. There was a short tree with
a dead limb sticking out the side. I took all the worms out of my pocket
and tied them on that dead limb. I figured the folks who lost them would
I did catch enough fish to have a nice mess for supper and give a few away.
I asked a few of the people I know who fish to let me know if they heard
about anything happening at this pond. It took four days before one of them
called me. The worm fisherman had returned and were going nuts because
someone had come in and caught all the bass that they lost. They wanted to
know what the magic lure was and who had done it. All he would tell them
was that the bass were still in the pond.
They have put an ad in the paper to try to find out who caught the fish.
I called the number and left a message that "There is more to fishing than
casting worms and plugs." They still question a lot of the folks around
who fish but have not asked me because "you can't catch bass on the fly rod."
My wife tells me that I should tell them so it would quit bothering them. I
guess I am just not as nice as she is. If they ever do ask me if I did it I
will tell them, but I have asked the other folks not to. I do have to take
one of the other guys out as he wants to try a fly rod now.
~ ~ Rick
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