THE TIPPET

FOSAF'S OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER - NUMBER 29 - August 2010

"ON THE LINE" - EDITORIAL FROM THE FOSAF CHAIR - ILAN LAX.

So here we sit in the dead of winter trying to find some way to warm ourselves. We all use a range of strategies from accumulating too many layers of clothing to burning carbon based substances in abundance to sipping on some of the finer distillations, various amber fluids among them. Whatever your choices, you can rest assured that the winter solstice has been and gone and the days have begun to lengthen giving us hope that spring will work its rejuvenating magic on the world around us.  While this doesn't mean the cold is a thing of the past (we can get bitterly cold fronts with snow all the way into November) it does signify a return to the light.

I have been told that the autumn produced wonderful fishing on our streams and other waters all over the country.  I have seen some amazing photographs of fish and waters that have left me dreaming of the chance to get away from my desk and this keyboard and out into the natural grandeur and wonder that is manifest in almost any part of our beautiful land. 

With it having been such a great autumn it's no surprise that the winter has also produced some quality fishing.  My sources tell me that our stillwaters are producing some excellent fish across the species.  However, some people also say this is a good time to put up your rods and check and maintain your tackle, tie a few extra flies and generally earn a few extra brownie points around the house before the water warms up a bit.

Once again the Yellowfish Working Group hosted an excellent Annual Conference at Willem Pretorius on 16-17 April 2010.  The publication of the proceedings landed on my desk recently and makes erudite and interesting reading.  The proceedings are available on the FOSAF website www.fosaf.co.za. We are still waiting to hear from the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) as to the progress of the NEMBA Alien and Invasive Species Lists and Regulations.  What we have been able to ascertain is that SANBI and SAIAB handed the drafts they were tasked with preparing to DEA during the latter part of last year.  Since then nothing further has been heard. We sincerely hope that this important legal framework sees the light of day soon in a practical and simple form as the failure to properly implement this legislation could have a disastrous impact on our endangered and threatened biodiversity.

As I write this piece the World Cup has just come to a very successful end. It would be interesting to hear if there were any flyanglers among the many visitors to our shores and if any of our members took some of them fishing while they were here.

On the membership front subscriptions continue to come in dribs and drabs.  I would welcome suggestions from our members on creative ways of broadening our membership and enlisting the support of more people to help us with the important work that FOSAF does on behalf flyanglers.

So as you sit at your fly dressing table, whipping up some new patterns and thinking about the opportunities still to come where you'll fish these creations, whether it be fresh or salt water and whatever the species, reflect on this bit of inspiration from Scotland: "The spirit flashes, like a salmon leaping.  Although the salmon may be caught on a hook, the fisherman has no way to capture its beauty."

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