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Fishin' with the bovines

Joined:
2012/3/14 6:23
From Lancaster
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Was doing some early morning carp fishing on a new section of creek that I recently got permission to fish. This section has some really big fish but they are extremely spooky. They must be able to feel me walking along the bank because they spook at times when there is no way they could see me in low light conditions. Anyway, while trying to cast to a large fish I heard a noise in the meadow behind me. I turned around to find about a half dozen curious young heifers directly behind me. At first I was frustrated, but then I thought I have permission to be here and these are the farmer's cows. I am on their turf. Why shouldn't they be checking me out? I decided to stop fishing to avoid an impromptu flyfishing type of rodeo by hanging a fly in one of their ears. They harrassed me the whole way out of the meadow (almost in a playful manner). As I was departing trying to avoid the newest of the meadow muffins and fending off the young cows I felt a sharp tingle in my elbow. I had inadvertently laid the tip of my 9' fly rod on the single strand electric fence reconfirming the fact that graphite fly rods are pretty decent conductors of electricity. I will be back to try it again but I need to give the carp some time to settle down as the stomping cows had them pretty worked up. So it goes with carp fishing in Lancaster County....... Feel free to respond with some of your flyfishing/cow encounters. I'm sure there are some good ones out there.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 8:19


Re: Fishin' with the bovines
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2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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Funny. Cows sometimes seem curious about fishermen.

Dc410 and I used to fish Falling Springs a good bit back in the day (mid 80's) and I'll never forget a day some years later when I was there by myself. This occurred in Skelly's farmyard by the fallen sycamore (old time FS guys know this spot - it's posted today) when some cows started chewing on my landing net, which was hanging on my back, while I was fighting a very large trout. I soon lost my balance and did a perfect nose dive headfirst into the creek. As I was struggling to get out of the water and completely soaked, the cows all walked up to the edge and were watching me with apparent fascination......and probably thinking, "who's this idiot going for a swim?" Anyway, I somehow managed to land the fish which turned out to be foul hooked anyway. The cows had some fun and seemed to genuinely enjoy the comedy act.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 8:31


Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2010/11/2 21:16
From Maytown, PA
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Cows are generally curious about anything that is in their territory. If you were mowing a meadow for instance and parked your tractor, inside the meadow, while taking lunch break, you would return to find it missing most of it wiring. Anything they can reach with that giant tongue is in danger. It would also most likely be missing a chunk or two of its seat and be covered in saliva.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 8:59


Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2008/8/24 20:26
From Mount Joy, PA
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That sounds eerily familiar dc. NickR and I were fishing the section upstream of the lowhead on Beechdale Road and had a very similar experience. I wrapped the electric fence with a fly and was able to safely untangle it. Unfortunately, I accidentaly laid my rod against the wire and received a nice "How do you do" from it. The cows were also out in the field and being curious. Personally speaking, I feel a bit threatened by cows when they come up on me while fishing. I realize that I probably don't have anything to worry about, but they are significantly larger than me and in greater numbers. Their curiosity can be a bit disconcerting at times.

Hooking a heifer in the ear with a fly... That would be a first! But wrapping a fly around and electric fence...you're not a Lancaster County fly fisherman unless you've done that at least once!

Posted on: 2013/9/15 9:18


Re: Fishin' with the bovines
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Cows are reincarnated fly anglers. That's why they are so curious. They cannot help themselves. True story.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 9:32
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines
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Quote:

JackM wrote:
Cows are reincarnated fly anglers. That's why they are so curious. They cannot help themselves. True story.


Actually fly anglers are reincarnated cows. That's why they herd together on a stream when a hatch is rumored to be “on”, and are led to slaughter when the words “fly-fishing” and “clearance sale” are used together in the same sentence.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 9:56


Re: Fishin' with the bovines
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From Dallastown, PA
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I have a beat near my house that has cows. They don't bother me so much while I am fishing. I break when they get behind me to avoid hooking one. Its unlikely you would hurt the cow with a #16 hook but you would lose the fly.

I have or should I say had a bigger problem farther upstream in a horse pasture where one Sunday am around 6:30 I dropped in and immediately noticed the horses were disturbed about 100 yards away. It was a little foggy and I couldn't see why but as they moved closer to me it became clear the reason. A mule that was obviously hanging a yardstick for the mares was repeatedly trying to mount them. The mares were not having any of it as I watched this for ten minutes the group ended up right on the bank ten feet from my spot. The mule lost interest with the mares and made an eerie stare at me...needless to say my fishing occurred outside that fence in a hurry.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 10:07
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines
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I've never been bothered much by cattle or horses while fishing, although bison (out-west) getting too close is a little disconcerting.

I do have vivid memories of every run-in I've had with electrified fences, especially the time I was lost in the dark in a fenced-in pasture.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 10:24


Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2008/5/29 15:28
From Lititz/Huntingdon
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Back some 15/20 years ago I hooked one in the ear up at Snavely's Dam/Hammer Creek. She had been sneak'n up on me and push'n me in the back that much that I had a big wet spot on my back and every time I turned around to swat at her she'd run of a few yards. I finally hooked ol number 26 in the ear. That was the bras tag number in said ear.... I am so glad nobody was around to see that little chase. I did get my fly back tho. I finally gage up and just sat down. She came strol'n over and let me take it out. All that for a .35 cent Adams! Go figure.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 11:19
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2011/6/12 20:15
From Newville, PA
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This post brings back a memory for my first springer's first pheasant hunt in 1978. He flushed a cock which I only managed to wound. He went over the hill into some brush to try to make the retrieve. After about 5 minutes waiting for him to return, I climbed the hill to find him holding the bird in his mouth surrounded by about a dozen young Holstein steers. He didn't know how to get out of the gauntlet, but was not giving up his first pheasant.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 11:57
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2012/10/24 19:22
From Landenberg, PA
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i've fished a to on dairy and meat farms.

cows are always fine. heifers on the other hand sometimes retain some of their bullish aggression despite the loss of their misters.

while you're fishing both will generally just watch you, but that can draw a crowd. and that can be intimidating and cause problems when its time to leave.

i was charged by them a number of times until i saw how the locals do it - heifers are not afraid of shouting or waving of fishing rods, which is how most surrounded or threatened anglers react.

they'll pretty much smell your fear and move on in closer. i've hurried climbed five bar gates a few times in chest waders.

the trick is to show no fear, keep your voice low but firm and baby them (" c'mon no-nuts, out my way..."), followed by a swift tap on the ass with the handle of a long landing net or a wooden wading stick.

then walk slowly and ignore them. if you jog they'll run at you. they will follow you though.

i'm not sure its always malicious, maybe its just a game to them ?

i'd bet we anglers look and smell funny to them, the farmers smell of the farm obviously and don't wave useless sticks.

i like them, its part of the countryside experience. we city folks just have to learn their ways tis all.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 12:09
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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Geebee, with "the lost misters" statement, I believe you are confusing heifers (young female) and steers (castrated male).

Posted on: 2013/9/15 13:09
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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On the cows, I grew up with cows, they don't bother me at all. My county has more cows than people though, well at least my end of the county does.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 13:13
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2006/9/11 13:33
From Lehigh Valley
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Never, EVER pee on an electrified fence.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 13:14
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Re: Fishin' with the bovines

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2012/3/14 6:23
From Lancaster
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On the topic of leaving a fly in the ear of a cow. Not that the farmer would likely see his heifer with a size 6 crayfish earring but if it would have happened and he did happen to notice it would have definitely been a very bad PR move on my part. That thought helped me make the decision to throw in towel for the morning.

Another cow story: while backpacking out an archery killed buck in West Virginia after an extremely long track job, two buddies and myself found ourselves crossing a high country meadow in a fairly dense fog. We were suddenly surrounded by a herd of huge, semi-wild free ranging beef critters. I remember our concern about the possibility of a bull in the herd. I also remember saying that I felt fairly safe because I knew I could run faster than my one buddy. What are friends for? Lol.

Posted on: 2013/9/15 13:38



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