1902 Encyclopedia > Angling > Greyling Fishing

(Part 8)


Greyling Fishing

The grelying (Salmo Thymallus) is not so widely distributed as the other members of the Salmonidae. It is found in comparatively few rivers in England; in only one in Scotland, the Clyde, into which it was introduced some years ago; and not at all in Ireland. It is a useful fish for the angler, inasmuch as it comes into the best rivers just as the trout is going out. It is a handsome fish, of graceful shape, very silvery sides and belly, with small black spots. It supposed to smell of thyme when first caught, hence its name. It is seldom known to run much above 4 lb in weight, and even that size is not at all common, -- from ¸ or 1 lb to 1 1/2 lb being the average takeable size. It rises very freely to the fly, and will take other bait; but is less carnivorous than the trout, so that minnow is rarely used as a lure for it, - small insects, as gentles, caddis, &c., may be used with advantage. The flies it prefers are usually small white duns and spinners, such as are used for trout in clear waters. The longer dorsal fin of the greyling allows it to rose from greater depths more rapidly than the trout, and deep still reaches often hold the best fish. Unlike the trout, a greyling will often rise and refuse the fly four or five or more times in succession, and yet will perhaps take it after all. The mouth being tender, the fish must be treated more gently than the trout, or it may break away. There is one way of fishing for greyling practiced in the midland rivers which is worth notice. It is called "grasshopper fishing," though the lure is totally unlike a grasshopper. A lump of lead of an elongated pear shape is welded or cast on to the shank of a No. 5 or 6 hook. This is covered with wool or worsted wound on to it in rings of different colours-green, yellow, and sometimes red. To make the bait more attractive, sometimes two or three gentles are put on the hook, and the bait is cast into a greyling eddy, and worked up and down smartly until taken by a fish. The angler strikes at every suspicion of a bite. Large baskets of greyling are taken thus.

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