Entomologists and Fly Fishing … What do I tie on?
This is a question that has been asked for years and years, centuries in fact !!
This question has as many answers as there are Fly Fishermen. I believe the most popular answer is “It Depends”! I am not very fond of that answer as I am sure many other anglers don ‘t care for it either!
Because of this answer there are many, many Fly Fishermen out there that have practiced and practiced and through trial and error have decided on a basic few.
Then of course you have those Anglers that will only carry one type fly with them. This one fly may be in different sizes and colors but that is the only fly they will use!!
On the flip side there are those Fly Fishermen that will carry hundreds of different flies. These flies will be in different sizes and colors along with belonging to different insect families.
These Fly Fishermen have spent hours upon hours studying the different species of insects in the water that they fish.
They have to determine if this is a new species of insect or is it just an immature smaller nymph that they already have tied in their Fly Box.
Will this “new species” that they have just seen grow into a insect that they recognize or is it truly a new species!
This is something that they have to determine for themselves before they are truly satisfied!
It is these Anglers (that have done all of this studying) that have become expert entomologists.
We have to thank these entomologists because if it wasn’t for them we would not have the knowledge that is out there today. We wouldn’t be able to understand the Trout Waters the way we do today either.
Of course that still doesn’t help with the question “What do I tie on?”, but it does give us a few more clues!
We must also remember that there are many different speeds of water flow, many different aquatic plants and, weather conditions. The variables are endless so, what do you tie on?
You must consider the region along with the state, then of course there is the time of day, month or year.
There are still the universal hatches (for example the Hendrickson, Blue Winged Olives and Green Drakes), but the times they hatch, the waters they hatch in etc. can all be different.
There is another question when Fly Fishing to consider when deciding on what to tie on, and that is: Is this a mountain stream or a stream from a freshwater lake, or maybe the ocean, is it limestone (amongst other things). These are all characteristics to consider when asking the question “What do I tie on?”!
I guess it is going to be a question that goes on forever and only you (the angler) can figure this out for yourself, even Entomologists can’t help you in some areas!