Dr. Andy Danylchuk

Years Fishing?


Who introduced you to fly fishing?

My passion for fishing started thanks to childhood friend that I still hang out with, and then I began fly fishing with my wife Sascha when we lived in the Turks & Caicos Islands. 

Can you tell us a little about your home waters and the fish you pursue there?

I live in New England where I target trout, striped bass, and even smallmouth bass on poppers (loads of fun!).  I am also fortunate enough to have research projects related to recreational fisheries that span the globe.

What's the height of the season for you? What time of year is your personal favorite?

The height of the season varies based on where I am and what I am targeting/studying.  If I did have to relay one favorite, it would be bonefish the Western Atlantic (Florida and The Bahamas) in June and November (pre and post hurricane season).  I am also a huge fan of all the recreational fisheries in Argentina, including Golden Dorado and all the big-ass trout.

What are your favorite travel destinations? What's on the bucket list?

Every travel destination is a favorite.  On my bucket list is being able to continue research on GTs in premiere locations such as the Seychelles.

What you like most about Thomas and Thomas rods? Which rods do you fish?

Hand made in the US, and the culture of the company to produce the best rods possible while also caring about the future of recreational fisheries.  I recently fished the 6 wt DNA Switch in Argentina and LOVED it, and now I am fishing 12 wt Solar in the Keys and am very impressed with how it loads.

What's your current go-to fly?

Whatever the fish eat.

Other than fly tackle, what piece of gear do you find indispensable?

Patagonia Tropic Comfort Hoody II - not too heavy, can be layered (I even wore it in Argentina trout fishing), and its SPF 50 rating means that I don't need to put so much sunblock on. 

From the angler’s point of view, what do you see as the main value of going on a guided trip?

Local ecological/fishing knowledge is extremely important, not only because it helps you catch fish but also because recreational angling can fuel a significantly part of local economies.

What can new fisherman expect to get out of a guided trip? My favorite thing to teach a client is ...

I frequently do my recreational fisheries research side-by-side with anglers.  What I get from them is their local knowledge of the fishery and being able to do research on the fish they catch, while what I hope they get from me is information that will make help them take care of the fish they plan to catch-and-release.

What's your ideal lunch when on the water? What do you actually pack?

I always pack ample water and a few Cliff Bars to keep me going.

What fly fishing blogs/magazines do you read regularly?

Moldy Chum is my go-to blog.

When I'm not fishing you'll find me:

Going on adventures with my wife and kids, traveling, and teaching at UMass Amherst.