The Rod color does not matter, you've over looked the important factor, that is amount of gloss on said rod.
I have had issues catching fish on sunny days. I figured it was the sun reflecting off my glossy rod. So I took it home a sprayed it with a flat clear laquer. Upon returning to the stream I had to fight fish off my fly. I then had a brain storm!! Well maybe it was a light drizzle. Anyways I then painted my rod with a combination of flat greens, browns and olives. I more or less camo'd it. Upon returning to try this version I was attacked by a rather large Brown trout as I waded into the river. I successfully scared him away by flashing my $50 abel nippers. If it was the color of the nippers or the menacing look of these astonishing nippers I don't know. More testing to come.
to be further tested I will tie various sticks and leaves to my rod to see if that increase catch/cast/pool ratio indices. I must figure out how to account for duck traffic during tests as I notice this variable also positively effects fish activity. Tho I must mention its only Mallards that seem to increase fish activity, Mergansers seem to reduce fish activity. I must try other puddle ducks and divers to see if this is a anomaly to puddle ducks vs. diver ducks. I may try using decoys to see if they will induce a similar rise in fish activity.
Look for forth coming books
Matching the Quacks
These will be available at your local Hatchery/feed store.
Good points your making with this topic. I have found that rod color and a well coordinated attire are mostly species specific. I use dark grey rods for my trout C&R as well as grayling fishing. The earth tone of cane is best used on the days when I really don't care what I catch.
Olive green; now that's the big fish color. I kid you not Combine olive green with the proper wader and jacket colors and you can knock them dead. If I were taking you fishing I would offer you one of my black & camo with the barbed wire graphic Chevy caps to wear also. I have 2 of them that the dealer gave me when I got the truck.
These fish were dead when photographed but I released a total of 13 during the 3 day time span of the three pictures. I wore the clothing and used the olive Spey rod each day.
This catching went on for the remainder of the season and I wore the same cloths and cap and I slept with the olive Spey rod. I don't know for sure how many fish were caught and released but I took 3 for food they were 33 - 34 and 42 pounds.
I have found that for whatever reason when I used a gloss black 1981 Hardy Spey with scarlet whippings last year all of the fish were smaller. I caught more of them but they were no doubt smaller. I also wore an old black cap with a red North Face logo on it, strange. This spring I am going back with the olive blanks on a new Hardy Marksman 2 'T' series rod and wearing the Chevy cap and Filson jacket. Time will tell if I am onto something here.
Something I neglected to mention in my post above; it seems that when trout fishing with a dark gray un-sanded blanks circa 1979 Orvis 5 weight, I can't keep silvers off the rod. I believe I can say without danger of embellishment that I have caught at least 65 - 80 large salmon with the dark gray un-sanded rod. It has a cork insert instead of wood and I am not sure if that has any influence on the results or not. It is however uncanny how many untargeted silver salmon are brought to shore with the gray rod.
After your in depth study of this often overlooked aspect of Fly Fishing, I am somewhat perplexed about your not taking into consideration color of the reel.
After all it has to be a huge factor in so called "swing weight", CG of the rod when casting and it's effect upon the proper part of the cork "handle" to hold onto etc etc. I think you owe us an explanation, don't you?
If indeed there is a serious question lurking in here somewhere, Gary Lafontaine was a big advocate of dark colors and non-reflective finishes to avoid spooking fish with inadvertent, unnatural movements or colors or flashes. His "Stealth" series of rods (which are still in production and available from his website, I believe) had a matte black blank and black windings and hardware, and he had Jim Teeny make a line for him (which likewise is still available) in dark olive with a matte finish. I don't think he ever put his name on a reel, but he preferred dark, flat anodized finishes on them too, rather than the bright metallic or colorfully painted ones that you often see on the market today.