“I believe strongly
that two types of people exist in the world of salmon conservation: those that
give and those that take. When the givers outnumber the takers, the Atlantic
salmon will again become a sustainable resource in New Brunswick”, says Danny
Danny Barrett Bird was
born on March 19, 1950 at Fredericton, the capital city of New Brunswick. He
is the son of Barbara (nee Barrett) and Leonard N. Bird.
Danny Bird at the vise 2000
Danny started tying
flies in 1965 after the late Mr. Ernie Hall, a fellow friend and popular fly
tyer and salmon fisherman from Fredericton, got him interested in the art.
However, it was Danny’s longing to catch a fish on a fly, which he had tied
that really got him started. That same year he caught his first fish. He
remembers it well. It was in July when he hitchhiked to the Church Pool on
the Nashwaak River where that memorable fish took his “Silver Downeaster”.
Danny has acquainted
himself with most of the known fly tyers (past and present) from New Brunswick
as well as other parts of the world. He’s a fly tyer who’s near the front
when it comes to having knowledge regarding the preferred materials available,
newest patterns on the rivers, what works, and what doesn’t work. His time
devoted to gathering this information has been very rewarding. He has become
an innovator of fly patterns that are proving to be successful on rivers
nearly everywhere. One such fly is the “Glitter Bug”, which he originated in
1978 after returning from a fly-fishing show in Pennsylvania with a very
interesting material known as “Krystal Flash”. The fly was fished
successfully on the Dungarvon River for two years before he introduced anyone
else to the pattern. Most fly shops carry it in a variety of combinations that
have hooked countless number of fish.
Danny’s favourite hair
wing fly is the Rusty Rat. His favourite fully dressed fly is the Green
Highlander, but when it comes right down to it, he loves them all.
Silver Rat tied by Danny Bird
Danny Bird is a
representative of all-108 Atlantic salmon rivers and communities in New
Brunswick. He is an experienced New Brunswick guide who will on occasion
guide friends from far away places on several different rivers
What river is his
favourite? “All rivers that have Atlantic salmon populations”, says Danny.
But if you ask him what river is his favourite to fish he will tell you the
Kedgwick. If your wondering why the Kedgwick River you’d be safe in betting
the reason for favouring this river is because he caught his largest salmon to
date there in 1980. That salmon weighed 34 ˝ pounds. Danny doesn’t hesitate
for a second in sharing the reason for his success in catching such a noble
fish. It was a “Green Conrad” tied by Danny Barrett Bird that lured the fish
from the depths of Lester’s Pool.
Danny Bird is not a
stranger to fly tying and fishing. His flies have been written about and he has
authored articles for the Atlantic Salmon Journal. He’s also been written
about on his flies in the Victoria County Record (Perth Andover) and in the
same paper an article appeared back in the early 90’s about a fishing trip he
went on to Russia. His flies are in several high quality fly pattern books,
notably “Fishing the Atlantic Salmon - The Flies and the Patterns” -
Bates/Richards, “Flies for Atlantic Salmon” - Stewart/Allen, “Atlantic Salmon
Handbook”, Bodo, and the Atlantic Salmon Journal.
His favourite fly tyer
is Larry Borders who has been described by Colonel Joseph Bates as perhaps the
most talented tier of traditional feather wing salmon flies in the world.
Danny was the Regional
Director for the Atlantic Salmon Federation. Holding this position is not an
easy task. The knowledge, dedication and commitment needed to ensure the
Federation can move forward on behalf of everyone for the betterment of the
salmon and the environment is enormous. It takes a special kind of person
with the proper disposition to take on that challenge in light of the all the
controversy surrounding the salmon’s survival and its habitat. With Danny
Bird there is a deep personal commitment to prevent the salmon’s demise. There
is no “if we can save this fish”. With Danny Bird it is “we must and we will”
save the Atlantic salmon. By protecting the salmon today we can guarantee its
preservation for tomorrow. The slightest bit of support from many can be
measured by a huge step forward in the endeavour.
Danny Bird has been
recognized by a number of organizations for his dedication and contribution to
fly tying, angling and salmon conservation. His awards include:
Saint John River
Salmon Anglers Association - 1994
New Brunswick Council
- Atlantic Salmon Federation - 1997
Protective Association – 1989
The NB Lt Governors Award for"Wild" Atlantic Salmon Conservation 2007
Danny Bird’s message
to everyone in relation to fishing, guiding and the river is simple.
“Conservation of our most precious natural resource is imperative if we as
anglers are to continue to enjoy our favourite pastime. There are a number of
ways everyone can help and if we all work together toward a common goal, I’m
sure we’ll succeed. I believe the biggest single cause of the decline of the
Atlantic salmon is man. I believe that free flowing rivers will produce
future generations of Atlantic salmon that will be there for all to share if
everyone works together for the benefit of the fish and not for the benefit of
Spun deer hair
Woven through the body