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FisherOfMenJanuary 15th, 2012, 9:26 pm
NY

Posts: 115
Good evening, fly tiers...

I was out hunting the other day and bagged a male red squirrel. I've never seen a fly recipe that called for anything but tail, and I think that's quite the mistake. The body fur ranges from white/gray, brown, red, and orange. It is short, so perfect for dubbing. It gives an amazing orange-red body. Just thought I'd shoot that out there.

If you want to get your hands on some squirrel fur, talk to most any small game hunter. Most shoot 'em just to bring in the larger, tastier grays.

Hope this helps!
"Nothing makes a fish bigger than almost being caught." -Author Unknown

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. -Edmund Burke
SofthackleJanuary 16th, 2012, 9:35 am
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
Fisher,
here's one!



Native American (Flymph)
Hook: Daiichi 1550 #12 or similar
Thread: 8/0 Uni Thread-Orange
Hackle: Ruffed Grouse-Lesser Coveret
Ribbing: Fine copper wire
Body: American Red Squirrel dubbed using the Leisenring method on Orange Uni Thread

It's hard to see, but some of that body has beautiful oranges and red browns mixed in.

Mark
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
DoublespeyJanuary 16th, 2012, 10:36 am
Posts: 61I've got some great hair, and dubbing from a red fox that I skinned....had better be great, I had a heck of a smelly time skinning that critter!
MartinlfJanuary 16th, 2012, 11:55 am
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3075
Ever skin a groundhog?
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
DoublespeyJanuary 16th, 2012, 1:50 pm
Posts: 61Martinif....Better be like kissin a ducks arse without getting feathers up your nose....kiss, and be darn quick about it.
LastchanceJanuary 16th, 2012, 3:52 pm
Portage, PA

Posts: 437
I use a lot of squirrel dubbing, fox, gray, red, pine, etc. I love it.
Bruce
StrmanglrJanuary 17th, 2012, 7:14 pm
Posts: 156
There is a technique that will skin a squirrel in a matter of seconds.
GldstrmSamJanuary 17th, 2012, 7:34 pm
Fairbanks, Alaska

Posts: 212
I have skinned a groundhog, But it was days old in warm weather. WHAT A STENCH!
There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm. ~Patrick F. McManus
FisherOfMenJanuary 18th, 2012, 10:00 pm
NY

Posts: 115
Why do groundhogs stink? I've skinned a few animals, never a stench unless you poke the guts. Groundhogs different?
"Nothing makes a fish bigger than almost being caught." -Author Unknown

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. -Edmund Burke
GldstrmSamJanuary 19th, 2012, 1:27 am
Fairbanks, Alaska

Posts: 212
It was shot with a shotgun so some of its guts were shot out. Plus like I said earlier it had been sitting out a few days.
There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm. ~Patrick F. McManus
FisherOfMenJanuary 19th, 2012, 8:09 am
NY

Posts: 115
Ah. That red squirrel was with a 20 gauge, but luckily I missed any non-vital organs. Forgot about the ol' scatterguns.
"Nothing makes a fish bigger than almost being caught." -Author Unknown

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. -Edmund Burke
FalsiflyJanuary 19th, 2012, 11:34 am
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 660
Forgot about the ol' scatterguns.

The proper way to shoot a squirrel is to “Bark” it, if you want the meat, which IMO is very good, and/or the hide.

Up here in my neck of the woods the red squirrel and pine squirrel are synonymous.
They are considered as varmints and dealt with post haste. They wreak havoc, especially in seasonal homes and cabins, and in this case are best dealt with by use of a shotgun; my favorite is a 12 ga. No sense messing around.

We don’t have any fox squirrels this far north, it’s predominantly red and grey, but over the last 30 years there has been an explosion of blacks. I had a couple of albinos on the property a few years back but they disappeared. Afterwards I had a grey with a white tipped tail and was hoping to see a black the same way, but no such luck.

There is a technique that will skin a squirrel in a matter of seconds.

Strmanglr is right, but I think “in a matter of seconds” is stretching it. If you have ever tried to skin a squirrel in the conventional manner, as applied to most game, it is tough going. I was taught by old-time squirrel hunting extraordinaire Dick Toutant to make a circumferential cut through the hide, careful not to cut through any tendons, close to the hind feet. Stepping firmly on the tail, and firmly grasping the hind feet, pull upward. It takes some practice, as the proper pulling technique is the secret. Done correctly the hide is intact, though inside out, up to the head. Always taken legally and the meat is never wasted.
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
GldstrmSamJanuary 19th, 2012, 2:34 pm
Fairbanks, Alaska

Posts: 212
The groundhog was a pest so when it was shot we weren't shooting for the fur we were shooting to kill.
When I shoot for the fur I usually aim for the head, but I found out that for squirrels a BB/pellet gun above 600 fps with one shot through the liver/vitals kills almost instantly.
There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm. ~Patrick F. McManus
GutcutterJanuary 19th, 2012, 6:22 pm
Pennsylvania

Posts: 470
Falsifly wrote:
Afterwards I had a grey with a white tipped tail and was hoping to see a black the same way, but no such luck.


We have plenty of those rodents down here in Washington county. Except we just call 'em skunks...
Never did try to skin one. Have you?
All men who fish may in turn be divided into two parts: those who fish for trout and those who don't. Trout fishermen are a race apart: they are a dedicated crew- indolent, improvident, and quietly mad.

-Robert Traver, Trout Madness
FalsiflyJanuary 20th, 2012, 2:26 pm
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 660
My brother and I once owned a resort; lodge, bar and grill, ten cabins, bait, tackle, gasoline, boats and motors, nice quiet, right on the lake location, twenty four miles out of town. Out behind the lodge was the garbage trailer, a meeting place for the skunks and the bears. One beautiful calm morning, early on into my resort education, I took up issue with the skunks, deciding that I had had enough. I grabbed my Winchester model 12, 32 in barrel 3 in chamber Super X – Full and loaded it with number 4. I walked down to the dumpster and got as close as I dared, I shouldered the cannon, taking careful aim, knowing that at that range there wasn’t going to be much of a pattern and my target was going to take the full brunt of the heavy load. I touched off and received the slam of recoil through nothing more then my T-shirt, which left my shoulder black and blue. In only a matter of seconds I was hit with the reality that I had just made a huge mistake. In only a matter of minutes I was hit with ten cabins in full uproar. I have never, nor will I ever, do that again. That was until I took up issue with the bears, but that's another story.
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
StrmanglrJanuary 20th, 2012, 4:09 pm
Posts: 156
That is the technique Falsifly. I did some squirrel hunting when I was a kid and we would use that every time. I like the taste of squirrel, of course depends on the cook too. My Dad shot one up pretty bad in the gut, just about puked cleaning it. That was about the last time I went hunting. I can handle the blood and all that, but that smell was so intense. Better to use the good ole 22 cal for that small stuff.
OldredbarnJanuary 23rd, 2012, 5:31 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Allan,

Man! Did this thread take an odd turn! :)

In the 60's was when I started my small-game hunting. I may have been a pre-teen...I can't remember the age I was allowed to hit the woods with an adult.

One time an uncle picked me up early one morning and he and I and a friend of his drove out west of Ann Arbor towards Jackson Michigan to hunt for squirrels. We had plodded along all morning and had only spotted a glimpse of a small fox.

During the day sometime we had come across a couple yahoos who were found shooting in to squirrel nests up in the trees and my uncle kind of gave them an ear full.

I was feeling a tad tense after all this and was half pleased when we had decided to call it a day and were heading back to the car. We were walking down a path with a fair amount of separation between us when I saw something scurry up a tree.

"Squirrel! Squirrel! There going up the tree!" I shouted. One of the adults shouted back, "Shoot it! Shoot it! Before it gets away!" I raised my .410 and blasted up the side of the tree and something fell to the ground...We ran up to it to find a small chipmunk in pretty poor shape...

I was, for the rest of the day, teased as Hiawatha the Mighty Chipmunk Slayer among other things...

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
FalsiflyJanuary 24th, 2012, 2:05 pm
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 660
Allan,

Man! Did this thread take an odd turn! :)

An odd turn indeed.

One year the county decided it was time to replace the old wooden highway "CC" bridge with a new concrete structure. The bridge was located approximately one mile from the resort and the timing of the project couldn’t have been worse. It coincided with the Swallows’ nest building and the bridge was the Swallows’ nesting haven. The resort, with its many building and cabin eaves, was assaulted with a nest building frenzy, which resulted in quite a mess. Hit particularly hard was the bait house, which stood at water’s edge. One of the bait boy’s morning chores was to deter this onslaught by use of a broom. One morning the bait boy came to me complaining that he had been attacked by the Swallows and had in fact been pecked in the back of the head. This was a time in my life when the 24/7 operation of the resort left me little patience for nuisance. Angered, I decided it was time to fight back. Armed with a .410 and a full box of shells I took my stand at water’s edge and began blasting away. I attracted a small group of onlookers only to embarrass myself. If you are familiar with the Swallow’s erratic flight behavior then you understand my frustration. I don’t recall even drawing a feather and I pride myself in my wing-shooting ability.
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
OldredbarnJanuary 24th, 2012, 4:41 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2600
Allan,

Ha! I seem to sense a thread here...It seems you find shotguns the means of last resort fairly easily...:) When in doubt grab the 12 gauge! ;)

One of my earliest memories of Michigan took place when I was a pre-schooler in the 50's and we were visiting my father's uncle in northern Michigan. He ran a rather large fruit orchard near a town called Bear Lake. His operation was so large he had living quarters for migrant workers who helped him run the place and pick the fruit.

My father was in the Navy at the time and we lived in Norfolk Virginia.

I was wandering around behind his house when I spotted a dark spot in the lawn and headed off in that direction. It turned out to be a baby Barn Swallow or Purple Martin that had fallen from the bird house my uncle had there for them. It was one of those apartment house type nests with several birds using it.

All of a sudden I was being dive bombed from above by a very angry mother bird. I fell to the ground and was basically pinned there until everyone came running out of the house to rescue me after they heard my screams. My uncle got a ladder and placed the bird back somehow without getting harmed.

They are wonderful fliers. Watching the Bank & Tree Swallows and Night Hawks up on the Au Sable is quite a treat over the river. I have a Barn Swallow that sometimes follows my lawn tractor and I've wanted to try and feed it on the wing as I mowed to see if I could get it to eat out of my hand, but haven't tried it yet...It's snagging just about every moth I kick up with the John Deere. :)

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
FalsiflyJanuary 24th, 2012, 5:40 pm
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 660
When in doubt grab the 12 gauge!


The bears were becoming a real pain in the ass. Every morning it was “clean up the trash”. Crap was scattered everywhere, they were dragging full trash bags into the woods and had free run of the camp. The lodge would be packed full at lunch time and somebody would yell, “There’s a bear out back!”, and everyone would jump up and head to the rear exit to get a look. One morning my son Justin, who was about four at the time, walked in through the back door of the lodge and said, “Daddy there’s a bear outside”. I took a look and sure enough there it was, it wasn’t a big bear, I’d guessed a two year old, but the scary thing was Justin had to have walked within just feet of it to enter the back door. We had a dumpster delivered, a big one, which proved out to be no deterrent; the lids had been completely ripped off within just a matter of days. The smaller bears couldn’t get in but the bigger bears had no problem. We called the DNR, and they came out and set a baited live trap. It didn’t take long and we had one, which was relocated to the designated “bear relocation center” (I jest). For every bear relocated there were four more standing in line to take its place. The trap was returned, baited and set, and stood empty for weeks until the DNR hauled it away. And the bears, they continued the rampage. One day at lunch I spotted a big bruiser, I mean big, roaming around the dumpster. I ran up to the house and grabbed the biggest gun I owned which was the Winchester model 12, twelve gauge, (I have since added a Remington 30/06), and loaded it with my heaviest shot which was number fours. I knew that this would put a hurt on him, at the very least, and could kill him given a close enough shot. So this is how my first, bear and firearm, encounter played out:

I was walking down the asphalt drive from the house toward the lodge passing cabin number ten, which was set just off the edge of the woods. I heard a rustle just beyond the tree line marking the edge of the woods, and suspecting the bear I advanced in that direction to investigate. No more than twenty feet in front of me appeared a massive head with two beady eyes, staring directly at me. He was down in a small gully on all fours; only his head was visible. What he did next scared the $h!t out of me. He came up the side of the gully towards me; he was now in full view exposing his massiveness which dwarfed me. He stood up on his hind legs and started swaying and moving his head from side to side, we weren’t twenty feet apart. I kid you not. I knew this was not good; he was confronting me which was just the opposite of what I had expected him to do. I figured he would slowly turn and amble into the woods, where I would allow some distance before tickling him on the hind end with just enough punch to get my point across. Which was get the hell out of here and don’t come back. I never gave it a second thought, as I shouldered the gun, took a bead on the center of his chest, and squeezed. He went down on all fours, turned, and leaped down disappearing into the gully, leaving me as a major case of the shakes set in. I didn’t know if he was wounded or dead, I figured on the worst case scenario which was, he was wounded, and I wasn’t about to see for fear of being rushed by a very pissed off bear. I walked down to a crowded lunch time bar and took a seat next to my very good friend Walt Robb, a famous crappie and walleye guide on the Chippewa Flowage. I said, “Walt I think I have a problem, I think I’ve got a wounded and very nasty tempered bear and a resort full of people, what should I do?”. He just looked at me and smiled, saying nothing. Every minute that passed I grew more and more worried that someone was going to get hurt or maybe even worse. Finally I had to know one way or another. I took the shotgun and headed for the woods. There in the bottom of the gully, to my astonished relief, was a very dead bear. This all followed, within a week, a claim by one of our customers that he had been attacked by a bear in the wee hours of the morning while leaving the bar for his cabin. From the looks of his head and face, the following morning, it could have been believed, but in truth he confessed that he had been attacked by a tree. True story.
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
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