Urban Quadfecta

crystal gardens tilapia-5 31 11Hit a favorite local urban spot this Memorial weekend to see what I could catch. I got there about 6:30am and started working some of the upper ponds. Lots of carp were tailing in the shallows and I saw some fish I've never had the opportunity to pursue, Tilapia...

The carp action was consistent bringing quite a few nice fish to hand. I think I'm starting to figure out these carp as my catch rate is going up each time I head out there. Fishing for them is very visual, both you looking for them and them looking for you. Sight fishing is fun, some have compared carp fishing to pursuing bonefish on the flats. While I'm not sure I would go so far as to compare a carp to a bonefish, I can see the similarities for sure.

I had one fish that I was putting too much pressure on and straightened out the hook! What a blast.

Straightened Out Hook!

Straightened Out Hook!

Here are a few of the carp I landed.

crystal_gardens_carp-5.30.11
crystal_gardens_carp-5.30.11
crystal_gardens_carp1-5.31.11
crystal_gardens_carp1-5.31.11
crystal_gardens_carp2-5.31.11
crystal_gardens_carp2-5.31.11
crystal_gardens_carp3-5.31.11
crystal_gardens_carp3-5.31.11

 While chasing the carp I saw my first groups of Tilapia. They look like grey ghosts swiming in schools around the ponds. Very skittish fish, they spook very easily and getting a cast to them without scatttering them is very difficult. I had my best luck looking for the lone patrolling fish or where they were being aggressive chasing eachother out near the reefs in the ponds. Casting the fly directly to them and stripping fast seemed to be the most productive. They fight hard and are a very pretty fish in the sunlight. I was happy to catch a few and scratch that species off my catch list.

crystal_gardens_tilapia-5.31.11

crystal_gardens_tilapia-5.31.11

crystal_gardens_tilapia-5.30.11
crystal_gardens_tilapia-5.30.11

 While chasing tilapia I got into a few bass and a pretty good sized urban bluegill. Both put up good fights worthy of inclusion with the other fish.

crystal_gardens_bass-5.30.11

crystal_gardens_bass-5.30.11

crystal_gardens_bluegill-5.30.11
crystal_gardens_bluegill-5.30.11

There are 2 fish left to get a grand-slam here, Grass Carp and a Catfish, which may prove to be a tall order. Both are pretty difficult to catch on the fly.

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