NZ Rookies Part 1
Photos: Jonas, Anders
First of all. I don’t name myself an expert in anyway. I have only visited New Zealand during totally four months, divided into two different trips. But I know which thoughts and questions that were troubling my mind before my first trip. So it might happen, there is someone, who can get a little help from this fancy guide.
In most flyfishermens dreams you hear whispers about New Zealand.
As far away as you possible can go from Sweden, there are two islands. Two big green islands who together form a country named New Zealand. There lives about four million people. They share this land with a lot of sheep, cows, deers, possums, birds and other animals. But many of these animals don’t really belong here on the islands. They are not native species. In the 17th century New Zealand was colonized by the british. They wanted deer to hunt and trout to fish. That is two of many reasons why the stocking from hell started. Back then they didn’t know how serious it was, and what problems it caused to start this ecosystem experiment. It showed up far later. Problems which people are working to solve today and will have to do for a long long time.
To get rid of for example possum, and other stocked animals that now are called pests, the government have decided to spread a poison named 1080 into the lands. A poison who god knows what impact it has on humans and other animals. The debate around 1080 is ongoing and loud.
One stocked species that many of us flyfishermen like to se upon as positive, is the trout. Brown trout and rainbow trout. The fish also came with the british and showed out to fit in nicely in the southern rivers and lakes. The climate makes temperature relatively even all year round in the waters, and that means the amount of food for fish is also good all year around. The environment seems to be made for trout, which grow big and strong in both rivers and lakes. With that in mind, it seems strange that trout hasn’t been swimming in these waters since forever.
There are certain organizations which wants to go all the way with restoring the original flora and fauna of New Zealand. They are of the opinion that even trout is an intruder who don’t belong there. I have never heard of the trout doing any harm to the ecosystem, so let us hope it will stay there for us traveling flyfishermen to catch and release.