Thursday, June 26, 2014

Turkey & Starling Nymph

     Though I find the study of waterborn insects fascinating from an angler’s perspective, & I think I have a fairly good handle on the important bugs present in my home water, I’ve come to the conclusion that exact identification of an insect contributes very little to creating an effective fly pattern for meeting it on the water. And knowing the exact taxonomy of what is there will not necessarily get you a long way toward determining what the trout are preferring to eat during an evening offering a spectrum of choices. Tonight there was a blitz of spotted sedge coming off the river, & a lot of fish, backs & tails out of the water, revealing that they were feeding on emergers under the surface film –  & the sedge pupa emerger patterns have been working good – yet tonight they (the fish) wouldn’t touch a sedge imitation. A break, & a closer look at what was on the water revealed that the spotted sedge were masking a hatch of little black sedge, & also baetis (PMD), blue winged olive & a #16 gray mayfly whose identity I’m not sure of. While I sat watching the water, an olive stonefly landed on my ear. I picked it off, a #12. So, I determined that the classic ambiguity of the situation might be properly met with an equally ambiguous fly pattern, something impressionistic to simulate the emerging nymph stage of at least a couple of the insects the trout might be eating. This simple, all-purpose soft-hackle flymph (emerger) proved to be the mojo needed to turn the evening around. What were trout taking it for? I don't know. Never figured it out. In #16, I suspect it is taken for spotted sedge, baetis, or the emerging nymph of the unidentified gray mayfly. Main thing is, whatever the trout were eating, this one covered it nicely.   

Turkey & Starling Nymph

Hook: #14-#16

Thread: Wine UNI 8/0

Body: Mottled turkey tail – choose a secondary feather with close mottling – (6 swords for a #14) twisted with the tying thread (I leave the tag end of my tying thread long enough to twist with the feather swords)

Hackle: Starling ~ & finish


Flyfish NE Washington with Steven Bird: ucflyfishing.blogspot.com   

4 comments:

  1. "So, I determined that the classic ambiguity of the situation might be properly met with an equally ambiguous fly pattern, something impressionistic to simulate the emerging nymph stage of at least a couple of the insects the trout might be eating," writes Steve.

    At the Georgia O'Keefe exhibit in San Francisco in April of this year I observed a sign which quoted her as to an aspect of art that pertains to what Steve has written.

    She says: "Objective painting is not good painting unless it is good in the abstract sense. A hill or a tree cannot make a good painting just because it is a hill or a tree. It is lines and colors put together so that they say something. For me that is the very basis of painting. The abstraction is often the most definite form of the intangible thing in myself that I can only clarify in paint."

    Steve uses fur and feathers instead of paint and applies the same principles of design: Fur and feathers put together so they say DINNER to the trout.

    Steve and Georgia would have killed it every night on the UC.

    ReplyDelete
  2. awesome fly steve well done

    ReplyDelete
  3. Barry, thanks for the useful analogy. But is it not true that O'Keefe meant her flower paintings to be symbols for female genitalia?... &, in fact, many of the paintings are nearly blatant representations?... (Don't answer that.)

    And thanks for checking in & commenting, Rich.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Well I am not sure if that is what they are representing. I suppose some fishermen consider that a different sort of hole. Astronomers think of it as dark matter. Mechanics might think of it as a socket. Spelunkers could consider it a cave. Mental health professionals a depression. Those in the hospitality industry as, well you know, hospitality. Botanists as flowers hell bent on pollination.
    Writers, like yourself, as subject for a monologue. And of course baseball hitters consider it a "home run."

    Should I stop now?

    ReplyDelete