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 Post subject: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2022 1:48 pm • # 1 
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Read recent report on an adventure centered on a certain species of fish. no matter how careful the fisherman was in their plans, the end result was missing the target species. We have all been in that position, some more than others.

Flies are generally tied, many in great detail, for appearance. Now and then a fly will have some sort of audible feature. Often times in instructional videos, the host mentions to use a certain cement or resin because it has a low odor that will not frighten fish..

All this got me to thinking about scent as a feature. Recently I watched a tutorial on crappie jig flies and the creator spoke of adding a small square of felt soaked in anise oil to each hook. My initial thought was maybe this would be a good idea in fly fishing for carp. Now, I honestly do not know how greasy/messy/smelly anise oil is and the less than stellar image of my fly box full of soggy looking chunks of fuzz comes to mind. But even still the idea of using vapors still lingers.

Yes, using scent seems to be pretty far off the charts from traditional fly fishing, but certain patterns and target species appear to lend themselves to at least to the consideration of incorporating scent into the overall scheme of pursuit. Any thoughts or experiences in this subject readers are willing to share?


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2022 4:32 pm • # 2 
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Can't offer much in the way of experience/advice but I'm interested enough to watch this discussion with 'baited' breath. Full disclosure - I HAVE occasionally cast a hook with a worm on it with my flyrod; I wasn't flyfishing by my Province's definition, but I was definitely flyrodding. Nor did I lose a minute's sleep over it. So, yes, I'm interested in what experiences folks here have had with scented flies. (if its ok to avoid certain materials because they might impart a 'bad' scent, it seems to me that it might be ok to include materials with a 'good' scent? )
brent


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2022 10:48 am • # 3 
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I have accidentally foul hooked bait and cast it to snook hanging around the school. But, I've never purposely scented a fly. Yet.

McFly Angler has been doing it on his you tube videos, with some success. A decade or so, I would've objected. These days, I don't much care. I'm curious to see how it might effect the fishing.

If you do it, let us know the results. I'm pretty sure it won't hurt.


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2022 11:01 am • # 4 
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Brent's post brought back memories of opening day of trout season in New Jersey when I was a kid. It was combat fishing at its finest; bazillions of anglers, most of us armed with fly rods, standing shoulder to shoulder in the swollen, muddy water. No flies; everybody's fly rod was equipped with a bare hook, which was adorned with an earthworm, a kernel of canned corn, or a salmon egg. No purist snobs there.......


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2022 11:46 am • # 5 
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Many years ago the late Gene Bethea, Pearow, introduced me to using plastic worms on a fly rod - yes, i know, heresy!! But the first time I used one I caught a 5 1/2# largemouth with it. Since then I have converted many fly rodders into plastic worm users on their fly rods, and they love it because they catch more and bigger bass with the worms. Naturally the purists hate it, but I really don't care what they like or don't like, I'm into catching fish. After using a plastic worm for a little while I bought a bottle of garlic-flavored fluorescent chartruese scent which I dunk the bottom half of the worm in. Guess what? The fish love it even more than the plain worm!! As long as I'm keeping the fish happy, then I'm happy!!


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2022 2:15 pm • # 6 
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Rubber legs, foam bodies, cork bodies, bullet heads, lead dumbell eyes, crystal flash, all that stuff....pretty grey area we're in here. Cliff, slap a red collar hackle on the hook ahead of that worm and that oughta satisfy the most discerning warm water fly fisherman.
brent


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2022 8:24 am • # 7 
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What worms are you using?


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Mon Jan 17, 2022 11:04 am • # 8 
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strummer wrote:
What worms are you using?


My favorite soft plastic on a fly rod is a Watermelon Red Tiny Brush Hog. But they don't make those anymore so I use any kind of 6" worm and I bite about 1 1/2" off the end. The hook I use is the type with a tiny "corkscrew" on the end, so you just screw the worm onto it and it won't come off. I just cast it out and let it sink, sometimes giving it a little action by just touching the line. You usually won't see the hit but you'll notice your line slowly moving in a direction it shouldn't.

Sorry Brent, but I couldn't resist. :P


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Tue Jan 18, 2022 8:16 am • # 9 
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Cliff Hilbert wrote:
Sorry Brent, but I couldn't resist. :P


:lol


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Thu Jan 20, 2022 2:50 pm • # 10 
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I think it was Jack Ellis who wrote about tossing plastic lizards on a short sinktip for bass back in the late 80s or early 90s. Seemed like it was a good idea. But that was also with an 8 weight so we can't speak of such things here :P


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:07 am • # 11 
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The idea was brought up as a joke, but to tie a red hackle on a weighted screw in type hook may have serious merit. Hackle would mimic the appearance of a salamander larvae's gills. Granted this thread seems to be getting further away from this forum's main focus, but when a idea strikes....... Did set out to do a quasi scientific experiment dealing with scent. Tied a San Juan Worm to be dedicated to a scent or no scent test, but the local fish just were not interested in participating. To be continued later.


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:24 pm • # 12 
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I was going to say this Thread about a brown San Juan worm got a lot of Airtime/Ink? Very good discussions and point of view as usual! Good on my ultra lite fly fishing friends!

Standing by for your scent testing continuation.

Enjoy and Be Safe!


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2022 9:10 pm • # 13 
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My plastic "worm" on a fly rod is a Crappie tube cut in half or even quartered; a whole one doesn't cast as well. I use to use fly jigs but lately just a bare hook through the top of the split tube. I use to use 2 inch tubes but lately have resigned myself to the 1.5 inch since they are so much easier to cast. Lately I have been using #14/#12/#10 hooks.
This time of the year I do a lot of night fly rodding and the split crappie tubes are not suitable because I can't feel, and definitely can't see, when the split tubes have gotten off. I should mention that some hooks are better than others at holding the split tube; the ones I am using now have a curvature in the shank. The split tube doesn't go through the curvature so I suppose the split tubes hold better because of some aerodynamic phenomenon.

BTW, I landed a 30 pound catfish with a 6'6' CGR 4wt caught with one of these split tube worms. Didn't post it here because it was not ultralight.
That was several years ago.

I have tried "flavoring" them for carp but the carp are not making a bee line to the offering. It seems my carp catching is pretty much incidental.


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:52 am • # 14 
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One of my favorite fly patterns when the fish are picky is called the red wiggler, which consists of a literal red wiggler worm "tied" on a snelled baitholder hook. The leader taper is critical when using this fly, the formula I use is 0X mono straight to a Carolina Rig. I think this technique was first described by Izaak Walton in The Compleat Angler, 1653.

Fish however makes you happy, obey the regs, and don't be an *******. There are no other rules :)


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2022 8:14 am • # 15 
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lka wrote:
The leader taper is critical when using this fly, the formula I use is 0X mono straight to a Carolina Rig.


:lol :lol :lol
brent


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2022 8:46 am • # 16 
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COVID restrictions had me fishing this past spring with my wife more often than my usual fishing cohorts. She has to catch fish constantly or just loses interest so we generally head out for perch in my boat.
I’d set her up on an ultralight rod and a tungsten jig tipped with a tiny piece of crawler while I played around with fly or u/l rod and various baits/lures. I tried flies, both unscented and scented with an anise based attractant and just barely kept up to her catch rate. It was when I switched to a rubber bodied, tungsten eyed jig on my ultralight rod that I started out fishing her, maybe 2 to 1. She may disagree on this last statement but I stand by it.
A small sample, but adding scent to my flies didn’t seem to help with numbers of fish. Admittedly a very small sample size and certainly not the last word. Also, we’re talking perch here, a fish that is often hard to keep OFF the hook.
The rubber bodied jig I mentioned is a takeoff from the “ Wee Willy Wiggler” and is one of the more effective jigs/flies I’ve recently used. Fish refuse to spit this fly out until you’ve had time to set the hook.
Harry


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:20 am • # 17 
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First, let’s consider what not to do.

When I was a kid there was always work to be done in my family’s auto repair shop. My job was to wash the car parts in gasoline or some noxious cleaning solvent. There was also a spring creek with wary brown trout across the road, and my grandfather would occasionally come by to give me a reprieve from my parts cleaning drudgery and go fishing across the road. He would always caution me to wash my hands carefully so as not to scare the fish with such nasty smells, which I would do, but he would usually outfish me anyway. Perhaps there was still some scent remaining on my hands, but his approach was also much more stealthy than mine. Mind you, this was bait fishing at its finest.

Now comes the time for a true confession. Between 1978 and 1995 one of my favorite spots was a beaver flowage near my home in northern Michigan that had quite a healthy population of brook trout. My favorite way of fishing it was by paddling a canoe upstream and casting a small muddler minnow ahead of the boat. It was all catch and release fishing, so some trout I would catch and release into the cooler so they could go home with me for dinner. Really though, certainly most of them would be released into the water. Those that went onto ice in the cooler would first be dispatched with by severing their spine just behind the head with a pocket knife. Sometimes the muddler minnow would be inserted into that fatal wound to get some blood and fish scent into the clipped deer hair. I believe that turned a lot of potential short strikes into solid takes.

Now, I may not know much about rubber/plastic worms and such, but that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2022 3:52 pm • # 18 
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Free2Fish wrote:
The rubber bodied jig I mentioned is a takeoff from the “ Wee Willy Wiggler” and is one of the more effective jigs/flies I’ve recently used. Fish refuse to spit this fly out until you’ve had time to set the hook.
Harry


I keep trying that fly and have never had much luck on it. Funny, because it's basically a Trout Magnet which I use all the time on UL spin gear with great success.


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2022 1:02 am • # 19 
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I have rubbed a fly in mud and dirt from the river I fished to remove any odor and introduce the same smell in the environment the fish feed in. Can't say it really increased my numbers but tha was years ago in Africa.


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 Post subject: Re: Scent
PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2022 9:12 am • # 20 
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linecaster wrote:
I have rubbed a fly in mud and dirt from the river I fished to remove any odor and introduce the same smell in the environment the fish feed in. Can't say it really increased my numbers but tha was years ago in Africa.


I've done the same thing a number of times Eric, and it very definitely does work.


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