Fish have a special sensory organ located in their lateral line. With this organ fish can detect underwater sounds and disturbances. This lateral line is so sensitive it can detect a fish’s prey. An injured minnow’s struggle is readily perceived. Sound and other vibrations carry better underwater; therefore, be cautious to eliminate vibrations that may be detected by the fish. Heavy footsteps while walking or wading are to be avoided. Careless wading can cause the gravel to strike each other alarming the fish. Boat noises are to be avoided. An aluminum boat can sound like a bass drum. Carpet the boat’s floors and storage areas to dampen the noise. Talking is poorly transmitted underwater,
although very loud noises can be conveyed. So go ahead and talk but don’t vibrate the water. The basic rule is to avoid all motions which cause underwater vibrations.
In summary, after judging each of these variables, plan your approach carefully. Sometimes so many of these variables are stacked on the fish’s side that a successful approach may be just too complex. It would be better to find another fish. When these variables are stacked in your favor, the approach may be as simple as walking or wading directly to the spot that you want to fish. Remember that the approach plan should be to remain out of the fish’s vision and hearing. Move stealthily like a blue heron. Herons are professional fish stalkers, and much can be learned by observing their methods. Make motions slowly and deliberately and try to blend in with the environment. Dress accordingly with colors and patterns that intermix with the background. Once in position, stop and rest the fish; subsequently, the fish may accept the angler as part of the landscape. Make your first presentation your best one.
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