January 27, 2010
- a very dangerous jellyfish.
Mnemiopsis leidyi - also called the american comp jelly
is a pure killer, a mass murder, nothing less!!!
In Denmark we call it "The Killer Jelly fish" - and that is exactly what it is.
It all started in the beginning of 1980. The Mnemiopsis leidyi was brought to the European oceans in ballast water tanks inside super tankers. It was first discovered in the Black Sea, where it was the main reason for a total collapse of the entire fish population, after a period of only 5-7 years, and it has never really recovered, from this sad fauna pollution. In 2005 it was observed for the first time in northern parts of Europe, and after that, it has been a sad reality along the danish coastlines, and are now often seen in huge schools!!! - a very scary development.
The Mnemiopsis leidyi can be up to 15 cm. long, it has an egg shape and can be hard to se in water, but can glove in the dark (bio-luminescens). It is a greedy predator, that feeds from zooplankton, but also fish eggs and small larvae is on the menu. It can eat up to 15 times it own body weight every day, the pray is caught by small adhesive cells along it body shape. They can't harme bigger fish, but it takes out the first joint in the food chain, witch makes it so dangerous for every living environment.
But on top of all that - as if it wasn't enough!! - what is even more scary is that it is a hermaphrodite, and can reproduce it self only a few weeks after it's birth, and then they are capable of laying up to 12000 eggs in only 10 days - which speaks for it self, especially if the living conditions are right during a season.
Very, very scary perspective, and it has just begone!!!!!!
How does it affect the fish populations in general?
These huge amounts of Mnemiopsis Leidyi can literally vacuum the oceans. An example of this phenomenon, was proved in a study from july 2007, of how the amount of small vandlopper (a small kind of gammaridae) was reduced to 1 pr. m3, witch were normally 17 pr. m3, in Skive Fjord (a place in Denmark). Such a decline in the source of zooplankton, can not avoid to have an serious effect on the fish populations, that feed from this source.
Herring, brisling, mackerel, sea trouts, just to mention a few spices of fish, will suffer badly from these conditions, and in a wider perspective it will for sure affect the industrial fishing for Salmons in the Baltic sea, as well. Maybe that will create a political initiative, when jobs disappear and it begins to have some economic consequences in a big scale!!! - but then it is probably already too late, and the whole ecosystem has lost it's diversity.
- these small devils ?
Mnemiopsis Leidyi is very tolerant to both salt and temperatures and it can survive in temperatures from 2-25 degrees, so a real cold winter will increase the population, unfortunately the Mnemiopsis Leidyi has been found down to 40- 60 meters of water depth, and down there in the dark, the temperature seldom goes below 5-7 degrees.
But despite all these sad facts, there is a small light in the dark. Mnemiopsis leidyi has a few enemys. One of them is called the Beroe Cucumis - witch is another type of jelly fish, that feeds of the Mnemiopsis Leidyi, only problem is that it doesn't reproduce in the same numbers as the Mnemiopsis Leidyi. Then there is a fish called Stenbideren, witch also feed of the Mnemiopsis Leidyi - so it is a race between these species!!!.
Right now, as I am writing this blog, we are having the coldest winter in 24 years outside, and it snowing and freezing big time :O)
Ice is covering our oceans and fjords witch is probably the best thing that can happen right now, and the weather forecast promise even more freezing temperatures!!! - Thank you dear Weather Gods !!!! - give us more!!! - give us a deep freezer!!!
Let's hope that this problem doesn't spread to other parts of the world, and let us also hope that this problem, we are now facing in my part of the world, will create a much more focused political awareness about these problems in the future, otherwise the future generations will without doubt face some very, very serious consequences.
I you want to explore this issue even further, there is a lot of relevant links to be found on the internet - here is a few good ones:
" We all look too much at mother nature, but we spend too little time in it !!"
- Oscar Wilde
January 24, 2010
I have met a whole bunch of great people, trough my manny fly fishing adventures.
And there is always one subject which is brought up, when fly fishers get together after a long day at the river.
How to make the fly fish most effectively, in different conditions??
Then a good friend mailed me this picture, and it shows it all quite OK, even thought the picture quality wasn't 100% perfect.
Have a look, maybe you can use it, maybe you can learn something from it - or maybe you totally disagree !!! - Anyway here it is :O)
PS. I know it is in swedish!!
- But it describes the temperature to the left (red = hot / green = cold) - and how the sizes of the fly's changes during the different temperatures - and how deep the fly should fish under these different conditions. Quite simple to understand.
Tight lines ¸¸.·´¯`·.¸ )><((((º>
January 22, 2010
The famous Salmon & Trout Association, are taking serious action by putting focus on the problems and the madness, witch is going on in Scotland - and a lot of other places, by the way.
The Salmon & Trout Association call to immediate action, against the damage made to the wild fish populations, caused by the fish farm industry. The impact from this industry, is having a very negative effect on the population of wild salmon and sea trouts.
So therefore please help me, help them in their great work - Sign up!!! - or send it to a friend.
Look at this link, where you will find the sign up formula: http://www.salmon-trout.org/save_petition.asp?dm_i=CVM,39JZ,1HSXZT,A6K6,1
PS. the formula looks like the one I have copied to top of this post - but use the blue link to sign up.
(PS. "Politicians are full of shit - and the oceans are their toilets"!!)
Watch this great video from Salmon & Trout Association :O)
"Fly fishing isn't just a sport
- it's a state of mind!!"
- it's a state of mind!!"
January 21, 2010
I have been to Austria several times, fly fishing at a great variety of places. And it’s always lived up to my expectations. Then last summer my very good friend Robert told me about a place one of his friends owned in the southern part of Austria. It was located very close to the Slovenian border, so in other words we could experience some of the best fly fishing one could imagine from two worlds. Within a relative short drive, we would gain access to great fly fishing in Austria (some only a few minutes from the hotel). But we would also have rivers like the Soca in Slovenia within reach - The best from two worlds - it sounded to good to be true, but without any doubt, I had to explore this place.
We arranged it, and suddenly I found my self in a plain to Munich, then in a hired car to the small village of Primus, were the hotel were located. A typical mountain village, quit and beautiful - I simply love these small refugees - I want to get old in a town like that!!!. No graffiti, no gang violence, no cars, no noise - why do I live in a big city????
Robert deeply concentrated :O)
View from hotel :O)
The cosy family hotel Wutte
Everything went smooth, I arrived early in the evening to the little cosy family Hotel Wutte. Here I was received with great friendliness, got myself a big sandwich and a Radler (German beer with lime - the best!!!) - then a hot shower and off to bed.
Next morning when I attended the breakfast buffet, Robert and his fantastic wife Michaela, and their two kids were already at the table, eating breakfast. I joined them and we started catch up on lost time - and to plan the fishing for the coming week of course.
Luckily for me, they were all very familiar with the place, so I just had to follow along - perfect, like having your own personally - “guide family” - at my disposal.
They showed me some fantastic fishing, and we caught a lot of fish in all sizes that first day - rainbow, brownies and graylings - life is treating you good in moments like that!!!.
Mr. Milan Wutte in action :O)
After a couple of days in the local waters, where Robert by the way broke his split cane rod on a HUGE rainbow - his #4 couldn't match a 5-6 kg. very strong rainbow (94 cm,) - but somehow he managed to land it with the top piece alone!! - that's what I call real fly fishing!! :O)
Then Milan stepped into the picture. He wanted to take us all to Slovenia for a day trip, witch sounded perfect, since I'd never been there before, but heard so much positive about it.
Big shadow - Big fish!!
Next morning it was an “early bird” for all of us, before the sun came up, we drove of to Slovenia.
We arrived after about two hours driving, to something which is hard to describe, simply because the colors of the river, we parked beside, were unbelievable. Words can describe what we saw - a turquoise-bluish river!!! - an unreal and fascinating sight. But as if that wasn't enough, we could spot several big fish in the very clear water, from the bridge where we stood. I just had to fish!!!. And we did!!.
Milan and I went out alone, and for me that was a gift. Not only were Milan an excellent guide and fly fisher, but he knew every pool in this river, like the back of his hand - what a privilege it was to for me to be at the right place, with the right person. The experience I had with Milan that day, were beyond everything I ever experienced before!!. He showed me places I don't think many people have seen down there, fantastic nature and challenging fishing. The clear water in a combination with huge fish, made it difficult, but not impossible at all. I love this kind of fishing, where you have to think before you cast, everything has to come together, in a higher dimension. I’ll never forget that day we spend fishing together, those places we fished will always be something I can rely on for the rest of my life!
Milan grew up in this area and his comes from a family of several generations of fly fishers, so there probably isn't a better guide in this area.
Milan had the most amazing fishing technique, and I learned so from him that single day, than I’ve learned in years - besides that, Milan was great company, and we had some “great laughs” together!
We ended our trip in Slovenia in a nice restaurant, here we all enjoyed a very good dinner. Of course Milan knew the owner so we got a special treatment - a perfect ending of a perfect day.
Next spring I have o go bak in may, where the big hatching starts and hopefully Milan, Robert and his family and I will experince the same weather, the same atmosphere and the same sublime fishing.
Link o Milans nice little family hotel: http://www.familienerlebnis.at/
January 20, 2010
Emån - a place you never forget
When you arrive to the Emå fly fishing lodge, a classical old farmhouse, you are greeted by outstanding nature. While you are driving true a beautiful forrest, you easily spot several deers and pheasants, and between the trees you get a glimpse of the Em river to your left - a sight I never will forget - pure beauty.
The history behind this fly fishing lodge goes way back, back to times where danish and swedish Kings, English Lords and fly fishing profiles from all over the world, was a common sight at the banks of Emån. No wonder I might ad, because this place is one of its kind - everything is just completely right!!!.
Emån's reputation is mainly focused on some of the biggest sea trouts in the world, but huge salmons are not that rare - watch the video further down (from june - 09) - a 20.4 kgs salmon was caught on a fly in the Em river.
Lennart Westerlund with a world record Sea Trout from Emån - 15,26 kgs.
Em Herregård (the farmhouse), as it is called, has been on the hands of the Ulfsparre family for 9 generations, and the fishing started back in 1920 - witch is nearly 100 years ago, no wonder the atmosphere is so special, it's like stepping into a time capsule, a cultural treasure with no comparison anywhere.
The adventure began when Prince Gustav Adolf, who was the farther to the Swedish king at that time, invited two of his english friends, to join him at Em. They had such a good time fishing there. Afterwards the Prince recommended Gustav Ulfsparre, a 30 years old young man at that time, to create a small exclusive fishing lodge. Gustav listened to this advise and saw the potential immediately. After that, the rumors about this fantastic little place, were spread among the few. It was a time with great fishing, witch the old handwritten catch rapports still is a witness of.
Catch rapport from 1938.
Göran, the son of Gustav was so kind to show me around, and apparently they have so manny antique rods and reels stored, old hardy rods, and reels and a bunch of other fantastic stuff. But what I really liked to hold in my hands, were the old original handwritten catch rapports, such an important witness, of how things were back then. An other really beautiful thing Göran showed me was a fly box in mahogany, a gift from the Hardy brothers to Gustav. Of course filled with original old Hardy flies in it. I felt very privileged just being a part of all this for a short while - memories worth more than gold!
Present from The Hardy brothers
Picture of a young Mikael Frödin :O)
The old oak tree!! :O)
In the 1950 the industrial period was a reality, and like manny other rivers, Emån wasen't spared, environmental issues became a huge problem.
Gustav was a man with visions, and saw this problem coming long before anybody else. He began cleaning the river, and was probably one of the first persons to establish a real conservation program - a Biotopvärd, in swedish - with a future perspective, for this fantastic river. But he was up against governmental forces, and a hard struggle began, and even today they still fight for a free passage for the fish, so they can pass all of the 11 power stations, as I recall. Right now it is the Karlshammer power station they are trying to get a free passage around. To me that's a very strange scenario - it simply should have been done years ago. This is typical example of bureaucracy - stupidity at it's worst. On top of all this stupidity, are the fact, that a couple of modern windmills, easily could replace these old power stations, based on water.
Why don't they just do the right thing, and make it happen!!?? - strange world we live in.
The main entrance to Em fly fishing lodge.
Kent Häkansson - a day at the office!
Here is another great catch from Emån :O)
Today Em is run by a group of serious and very engaged people, with Göran Ulfspare as Chairman. And the Ulfsparre family have made long-term plans, for their fantastic worlk with the maintenance of a natural reproduction of a sea trouts population in Em River, and their motto is - “The sea trout fishing in Em River should contenue until the next ice age” - so Em River is in the best hands, and I feel very optimistic about the future perspective for Emån.
Some years has gone by since I stayed at the Em fly fishing lodge, and I still dream myself back to Emån, back to the quiet beauty of nature, back to a historical fly fishing treasure, back to the bench under the old oak tree, back to Home pool, Stone pool and Mill pool.
And who knows maybe one day, I will sit and just enjoy the scenery, getting old on a bench at Old Mans Place!! :O)
Have a look at these related links:
For Emån and Pelle Klippinge
3) http://speycast.se/ (Pelle Klippinges website)
All of my best wishes for all of you at Em, who make this place a reality
- keep up the fabulous good work :O)
January 18, 2010
The famous Bridge pool
"Vampire treatment !!"
Tim - tired, proud and happy!!
Arne Grønlien - focused !!
Heat record in Norway!!
"Wanted - dead or alive" !!
Tim & Bruce :O)
Manfred Raguse infront of NFC.
Gaula is known for it's fabulous pools, huge salmon and great scenery. Fly fishers, Royalty and celebrities from all over the world have true the years, traveled to Gaula, in hope of catching one of it's huge salmons.
A person who really have lived his dream out, and spend his life "chasing silver" all over the world, is Mandfred Raguse. Manfred came to Gaula 35 years ago, an instantly fell in love with it's magnificent an extremely beautiful pools - no wonder I did the same - 40 years later!!.
I can't even begin to imagine how it must have been back then, Manfred lucky you!! :O)
Today Mandfred is running the NFC - Norwegian Fly fishing Club - an exclusive collection of some of the best pools in Gaula. NFC were founded back in 1988, by Manfred and a few friends.
Since then NFC have ongoing added some of the most exclusive pools to it's portfolio, with the classical english names like Bridge pool og Home pool. It brings back memories of a time long gone, a time where the Norwegian government didn't allow the salmon farming industry to expand like it has these days, with huge consequences for most rivers in Norway.
Gaula has managed to provide excellent fly fishing, through all of these problems, and are still one of the top rivers in Norway.
When I arrived last summer, it was very hot and clear blu sky - not exactly salmon- weather!! - so it was night fishing all week, but it doesn't matter because the light never really disappears up there. Only problem is the mosquitoes, and they really seem to love my blood, those little vampire bastards :O)
On my trip to Gaula I meet some great people at the farm we stayed in - Arne Henning Grønlien, who has written several books about fishing in Norway - "Norges bedste fiskepladser" - is the latest one. It describes very detailed all about fishing i Norway, an excellent book by the way.
Tim and Bruce from England were also great company , they were both experienced Gaula fishermen. And they dedicated their mornings making a typical english breakfast, typical "fresh orange juice, egg an bacon style" - witch inspired me highly!! (I simply love a good english breakfast)
Despite the very difficult weather conditions , I managed to catch a small sea trout, and then I lost a huge one, in my favorite "Long pool", and one in "home pool" as well - as usual I might say, because I'm quite good at loosing salmons!!! - it takes a lot of practice I can assure you!! :O)
NFC and its wonderful pools, is a place that really took my heart by storm, and hopefully I will get back there some day, to cast my line over it's golden waters, hoping for rain, and of course a close encounter with one of the famous Gaula salmons.
Explore this link to NFC : http://www.nfc-online.com/ for more info about fishing in Gaula.
PS. All photos in this blog are shot by Arne Henning Grønlien & Mark Wengler