Paul Reddish and I went out to see if we could catch an enigmatic little fish on our recent adventure in Valencia. This is a nase which has a distribution limited to a couple of regions in this area. To the best of my knowledge it doesn´t have a common English name and scientists pin it down with a binomial that seems much more substantial than a little fish like this deserves: Parachondrostoma turiense.

If I were to show you a picture of even our finest specimen you might dismiss us both as tiddler snatchers but the truth is that this a fish of truly modest size. This is the kind of fish that is never going to get stuffed by a taxidermist after catching the attention of trophy hunting fanatics. It is simply a lovely and rare species that lives out its life unseen and unknown by all but a very few. I suspect it is rarely if every fished for and it may well be that Paul and I, having captured and released a few fish each, are the world´s most successful and experienced specialist P turiense fly fishermen!

To catch them we waded into an overgrown section of the river and worked our way up into the current. There was little room to cast in most places but distance casting was not needed. The fish tended to hug the bottom in the shallow stream, often sitting on top of one of the large stones, or working their way in small shoals through the water near the bottom that was relatively sheltered from stronger flows.

What these fish lack in stature they make up for in spirit. We were able to persuade a few to come up to take a dry fly but most were taken on tiny nymphs of size 20 and smaller. For me it was a great fun to scale everything right down and Paul was happy to let me fish for a while with his lovely one weight fly rod which was the perfect tool for the job.

I have rarely been so happily absorbed as I was while we both fished in this intimate river and caught these perfect little fish and it is a pleasing thought that, after our trip ended and we resume our daily work routines, that these beautiful little fish continue to thrive in their own secret and miniature paradise.


Here is Paul heading out to explore our little river.


Our pint-sized quarry.