Aquatic sow bug – A crustacean, not an insect and trout nibble at sow bugs whenever they get a chance. Though they’re not often selective to them, they’re certainly aware of them, and almost always willing to take an imitation if even a few of the naturals are available. Since approxi- mately 130 species of aquatic sow bugs live in North America, trout get those chances almost everywhere that you might find them. Aquatic sow bugs feed primarily on decaying vegetation. Their numbers will be greatest in still or slow- flowing water with marl bottoms, in watercress beds, or in the thick sort of bottom vegetation that is often called moss. They will be absent or of little importance in freestone streams with brisk currents and clean bottom stones.
Sow bugs do not emerge and they have hard shells, usually grey, flattened and a bit wider at the butt than at the head. They have two pairs of antennae in front with a small “v” shape at the end of each, a pair of legs that extends off each of seven thoracic segments, and a pair of forked tail- like members. It should be rigged to get them on or near the bottom. Use an indicator about the depth of the water.
HOOK – Size # 14 - 20 2x long nymph or 2x heavy curved scud. Mustad #R72 or Tiemco # 5262. THREAD – Black 8/0
RIB – Fine silver wire SHELLBACK – Gold Mylar
BODY – Gray ostrich hurl (long ones if you can) SOFT HACKLE – (Optional) Light blue dun hen
HOW TO TIE
You can also tie this in brown-tan-black and even in pink. But the it would be more of an egg pattern than a sow bug.
FURLED MIDGE PUPA
Furled bodies are excellent for extended bodies. Many materials that are thin or stranded can be shaped into extended bodies with this technique. Add strands of Krystal Flash or any other flashy or colored material to the yarn before it is furled for more variety.
HOOK – Scud, 2x wide, 2x short, 2x heavy, sizes 18 -22
THREAD – Black 8/0 or color to match natural.
ABDOMAN – Black or color to match natural Antron yarn. Furled.
GILLS – White Antron yarn
THORAX - Fine black dubbing or color to match abdomen.
HOW TO TIE
REVERSE MIDGE EMERGER
JIM SCHOLLMEYER AND TED LEESON
This reverse style can be used for a variety of emerger types. It presents a clear and uncluttered profile of the body and shuck of the insect by placing the hook bend and spear at the head of the fly. Leave your tippet ungreased so that the hook shank will sink.
HOOK – TMC101 – Mustad 3366 or other ring- eye, dry fly hook, #12 - #16
THREAD – Black 8/0
WING - White poly yarn
HACKLE – Grizzly
THORAX – Brown superfine dubbing
ABDOMEN – Stripped peacock quill (herl)
SHUCK - White antron
HOW TO TIE
HOT CREEK CADDIS
This fly is for all those members going to fish hot creek this month. It’s a very simple caddis pattern and is very effective for slow water caddis hatches that occur on hot creek throughout the fishing season. But where it really excels is when the water gets a little rougher at the head of a run. You can toss the fly in there and it is still floating when it comes on out - unless a fish has hit it of course. Designed by Eric Otzinger perhaps one of the best tiers in the world. This pattern sits low to the water and simulates the small gray sedge caddis that is prevalent on hot creek; which is a slow water spring creek. It can also be used as a mayfly emerger during pale morning dun and blue-winged olive hatches.
HOOK – light wire dry fly. Mustad #R50-94840 or Tiemco # 100 #16-#22. THREAD – 8/0 medium to dark gray.
BODY – medium to dark gray or other colors to match hatching naturals.(I used superfine).
Wing – coastal deer hair or very fine elk. HACKLE – grizzly neck.
HOW TO TIE
BEAD – HEAD BIRD’S NEST
If you’re always looking for a pattern that is quick to tie and also very effective then Cal Birds bird’s nest will fill your needs. It’s been around for 30 years or more and seems to be more popular each year. It’s very effective because of it being quite generic in shape and materials. Tie it with a shaggy and spiky body that gives it a lifelike and buggy quality. It can imitate a mayfly, dragonfly, damselfly and stonefly nymphs depending on the size and color you tie it in. You can also use the bead head or a leaded body if you prefer and change colors and materials to fit your needs. Opossum can be replaced by hare’s ear. Wood duck can be replaced by dyed mallard or even partridge.
HOOK – Standard nymph Mustad #3906B #16 - #6
HEAD – Gold metal bead in size to match hook
THREAD – Tan or brown 6/0 or 8/0
TAIL - Wood duck flank or dyed mallard flank to match
BODY – Australian opossum with guard hairs or hare’s mask
RIBBING – Copper wire HACKLE – Wood duck flank or dyed mallard flank to match
THORAX- Same as body
HOW TO TIE
SOFT HACKLE PHEASANT-TAIL NYMPH
Learning to give flies movement will make you a much better angler. Using patterns that have a lot of natural motion, such as soft-hackle wet flies, is one of the best ways to do this. Soft hackles are some of the easiest trout flies to tie, and when fished with extra movement, such as swung or stripped like streamers. They produce lifelike, pulsating motion that triggers fish into striking. Trout are like any other fish, and when presented with a fleeing prey, they rarely pass it up. Soft hackles have a very long history of catching fish. Before the dry fly came along, all fly fishing entailed fishing wet flies and soft hackle “spiders”. Spiders originated in Scotland, Northern England, and Italy more than three centuries ago. Early anglers fished these patterns downstream with rods measuring more than 10 feet long. This style of fishing still works in practically every type of trout water, from steam riffles to still waters, but you do not have to use an ultra-long fly rod, nor do you have to fish exclusively downstream. Today, a “soft hackle” refers to almost any nymph tied with a collar of hackle such as hen or partridge.
HOOK – TIEMCO TMC3761 or Equivalent, sizes 18 to 10
THREAD – Fluorescent Pink and Brown 8/0 (70 Denier)
BEAD - Black Tungsten
TAIL – Pheasant Tail Fibers
ABDOMAN – Pheasant Tail Fibers
RIB – Small Copper Wire
THORAX - Olive Ice Dub
HACKLE - Hungarian Partridge
HOW TO TIE