Talk Strange To Me


Illustration by Zane Porter

The last issue of the magazine featured an article by my friend Matt Smythe ( about a not-so-accidental encounter with a Mexican crocodile. I want to hear about your experiences with what we will call non-target species. Birds and bats are the easy answer, of course, but I want to hear about the more exotic types. Dolphins? Manatees? Humans? They are the most dangerous game, of course.

Whatcha got?

2 thoughts on “Talk Strange To Me

  1. Most of us Florida anglers, especially we Natives, have caught at least one gator in their lives. A few years back I joined the ranks of those who caught manatees.

    I was casting a 12wt to a tarpon in an Indian River canal when a manatee surfaced under my line. It was too far out to lift the line clear or roll cast the line off its back, and the manatee’s stiff hairs kept the line from sliding off its back. It moved toward the fly and, yes, got hooked.

    I don’t know if it knew it was hooked but I did! As it swam off it got into the backing and the last thing I wanted was for it to break the line off at the butt end. I set the drag and pulled like hell. Like two past-their-prime heavyweights it was a slow, plodding fight. The tippet held but the hook straightened and we both got free of each other. To return to our own corners.

  2. Shad fishing in Deer Creek, Maryland. Gorgeous sunset, while I was blind casting, a bat echolocated my marabou fly and nailed it, mid-air. I can still remember every detail. Luckily after a tussle, the hook popped free. And away we went, continuing our objectives.

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