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The mention of Tsimane in the previous item brings to mind the following note that came in last month from subscriber Fred Miller. He had just returned from this now-famous golden dorado spot in Bolivia, and he felt compelled to heed my call for early feedback on the 2011 season. Tsimane, after all, was very much in the headlines last season for producing wonderful fish in absolutely ideal fishing conditions and also for infecting two anglers and two staff members with leishmaniasis, a parasitic disease transmitted by sand flies. Here is what Miller had to say about the fishing and the steps the camp owners have taken to avoid more infections this season.
“I am just back from my second trip to Tsimane. I was part of the third group to fish there this season. The fishing was quite good, although I prefer to go there in July rather than April/May. The dorado had not yet arrived in full strength but the early schools were memorable. I worked a little harder to get fish this trip, but you may remember that I had several days last July of absolutely record fishing. My friend, John, who was fishing Tsimane for the first time, referred to dorado coming up out of the murky depths as ‘school buses being hoisted by a crane in overdrive.’
The waters were higher this year and we had more rain than I expected. We actually had to delay fishing one morning because of rain. Afterward, though, when the river got stirred up, the fishing really turned on.
“It was early in the season when I arrived and the camp staff was still getting organized. The water system at Pluma needs some work, as do the vehicles there. The staff, though, was as spectacular as usual. No one could ask for more from a fishing camp staff. The kitchen does an admirable job, too.
“As for efforts to prevent a recurrence of leishmaniasis, I noted that bed screens had been installed. Actually, though, I saw few bugs. In the course of the ten days I was there, I was bitten three times and I think two of the bites were minor spider bites, though I did not witness the nighttime culprits. I’ll keep you posted on my health in the coming months if anything adverse happens.”