Cicada Zombies (8-5-2020)

Joe Birsa sends in a very interesting (and apparently true) article about Cicadas being hijacked by a fungus. The fungus produces psychotropic chemicals which affect the Cicadas’ behavior in, shall we say, unusual ways. Verified by several Board members including Bryan Mathie who thinks: “Yes, it’s real, but the impact on the Cicada population is likely to be small because they reproduce quickly”.

It’s interesting that Asian cultures have eaten deep fried Cicadas for hundreds of years. Should you be tempted to follow suit, remember that fungi produce all sorts of harmful compounds as well as the happy ones. Plus, you’ll have to keep your oil hot for another 14? years until the next time they emerge. Click here for Joe’s original article. Click here for a confirming article from the Smithsonian.

Eight reasons to take up fly fishing during a Pandemic (7-22-20)

Bob Bukk recommends an article originally published in the Washington Post. The article is a humorous look at fly fishing and the Covid-19 pandemic. Click here for article.

National TU Conservation Update (7-15-2020)

Our parent organization is please to provide updates about major conservation efforts that are underway on a national level. “Protect, reconnect, restore, sustain”. Two web-based updates are coming up in July:

July 21 – Pacific Coast & Alaska TU Conservation Highlights (2PM)

July 29 – Interior West TU Conservation Highlights (12:30PM)

These sessions are designed to educate and inspire local TU leaders, but the information they contain is certainly relevant to local conservation efforts as well.

Leave ’em be (7-15-2020)

Torrid temperatures and lack of rain in Western PA have combined to deliver a “perfect storm” of bad conditions to the fish in our streams and lakes, especially the trout. Trout like it cold, in part because there’s more oxygen in the water. Trout tolerate water temps in the 70’s but are living on the edge. Being hooked, played and landed may be a fatal event for a trout these days. So fish for bass and other warm water species or put the rods away, and get out the golf clubs. Leave ’em be till the weather cools off and we get a lot of rain…probably ’till Fall. -ED & Bob Heil

Jim Hoey has passed (7-14-2020) Update (7-18, 7-21)

Jim Hoey’s Fly Shop was a destination for fly fishers in the PIttsburgh area. Jim was always willing to take time from his work to swap fishing stories with his customers. John Hays has written a nice obituary. Click here to get more information.

Classified Ads – Buy and Sell Fishing Gear- Now available (posted 7-12-2020)

There’s a new section on the “Of Interest” page: Classified Ads. This section allows listing of items for sale and a link to those listings. PWWTU provides this service with the understanding that transactions will be between seller and buyer; PWWTU assumes no responsibility for any aspect of transactions. Click here to go there.

Combined wading staff – rod holder by the Birsas (Posted 7-11-20)

Mary Ann and Joe Birsa have conceived of a new device for freeing up hands while fishing: a combination of wading staff and rod holder. Joe has made several prototypes and is looking for advice about how to improve it. Click here for the story and PLANS.

2021 Cabin Fever Update KELLY GALLOUP primary attraction (posted 7/3/2020)

Bryan Mathie and Jodie Minor have good news for us concerning next year’s Cabin Fever Expo.

Mark your calendars: Sunday, February 21, 2021, a change from our usual early March date.

Location: Doubletree Hotel with expanded space for vendors and displays. The flea market will be held in the large hallway outside the vendor’s room.

Primary speaker: KELLY GALLOUP from the Slide Inn on the Madison River in Cameron, MT. If you’ve ever fished large lures for large trout, you’ll know that Kelly has invented some of the most productive (and cleverly named) lures in the business. Click here for a bio. His presentations are not to be missed.

Tentative schedule:

  • Limited attendance evening with Kelly who will tell stories and demo fly tying.
  • Two presentations on Sunday at the Expo: topics to be determined.
  • Limited attendance session to demonstrate the secrets of tying large streamers such as the Zoo Cougar.
  • Possibly a session with youth fly fishers.

PWW Meetings in the time of COVID (posted 7/3/2020)

Your Board has decided that the prudent course is to have VIRTUAL Chapter Meetings until the threat of COVID has diminished further. (Who knows when that will be, but it’s likely tied to the onset of “Herd Immunity” either through natural mechanisms or via a vaccine.)

The plan at this point is to use Zoom to record a short business meeting and the longer presentation by an invited speaker. We will upload these recordings to YouTube and distribute a link to Chapter Members via email. The link will also be posted on this website. It is not necessary to install Zoom or any other program on your computer.

It’s not as good as a face-to-face encounter with old friends in the confines of a Church basement, but it will have to do. Too many of our active members fall in the high risk category to risk exposure.