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> > Lafontaine sparkle pupa, Page 2

LastchanceMarch 17th, 2010, 3:22 pm
Portage, PA

Posts: 437
That's a neat photo of the caddis emerger with the air bubbles. I fish the sparkle pupa with good results. But doesn't La Fontaine's antron veil appear as though the air bubble is at the rear end of the caddis? It might not hurt to place a turn or two of flash near the head of the fly. Any thoughts on that idea? John Barr's Graphic Caddis is tied with a turn of two of flash beneath the floss at the rear of the fly.
Thanks,
Bruce
MartinlfMarch 18th, 2010, 1:55 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2978
Good point, Bruce!
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
EricdMarch 18th, 2010, 5:44 pm
Mpls, MN

Posts: 113
Oddly enough, maybe not, but I finally decided to join TU and received a few flies in the mail from them this week and one of them is either a Lafontaine sparkle pupa or something very close.
KerryWhiteApril 23rd, 2010, 9:28 pm
York Pa.

Posts: 9
Hi Matt...I like the caddis flies and am going to give some a whirl but could you tell me what is noodle dubbing? I have Gary's Trout fly book. Sorry for my dumbness...Whitie
WbranchApril 24th, 2010, 2:09 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2611
LaFontaine talks about his method of "touch" dubbing which might work for some but it didn't work, to my satisfaction, for me. It is a concept where you apply very tacky fly tying wax to the thread and then holding the fur of choice between thumb and forefinger you just keep touching the waxed thread with the dubbing and in principle it is supposed to stick to the thread and then you wind it on. While I did get the fur to stick to the thread I just didn't like the effect so went to the "noodle" method of dubbing.

You either use waxed thread or wax a section of it prior to applying the dubbing. Then you take a small amount of dubbing between your thumb and forefinger and apply it to the waxed thread and with a spinning/twisting motion of the thumb and forefinger, with the thread between your fingers the dubbing is transferred from your fingers to the waxed thread. You continue to apply more dubbing to the next section of the thread until you have a section of thread 2" - 4" long (depending on hook size and shank length)when it is completed it looks loosely like a noodle. It is not my term but one that I've seen in fly tying literature for decades.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
WiflyfisherJanuary 7th, 2012, 9:38 am
Wisconsin

Posts: 612
I listened to Ralph Cutter's audio interview and he talks about seeing the silver gas bubble while underwater during caddis hatches...http://www.askaboutflyfishing.com/speakers/ralph-cutter/ralph-cutter.cfm. Fact or fiction?

I have read some of Cutter's stuff in the past and he has great underwater trout fishing insights. What really amazes me is when he talks about how often trout taste our flies and we don't even know it! He gives an example of having to stick his hand in the air while under water and waving his hand to his fly fishing buddy every time a trout sucks in his fly. The guy had no clue the trout were tasting his fly. Ralph says trout are constantly tasting everything in the drift, which I have read before from others.
John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
TroutnutJanuary 7th, 2012, 12:35 pm
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2559
Ralph says trout are constantly tasting everything in the drift, which I have read before from others.


I'm doing a chapter of my dissertation on this very topic. It's with juvenile Chinook salmon, but it's the same principle. Taste/touch are a significant part of how drift-feeding fish decide what is and isn't food.

Knowing this makes me a bit more modest about some of my fishing successes: I didn't fool the trout into thinking my fly was food, just thinking it might be food and it's worth grabbing on to check it out.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
PaulRobertsJanuary 7th, 2012, 2:19 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1776
Ralph says trout are constantly tasting everything in the drift, which I have read before from others.


I'm doing a chapter of my dissertation on this very topic. It's with juvenile Chinook salmon, but it's the same principle. Taste/touch are a significant part of how drift-feeding fish decide what is and isn't food.

Knowing this makes me a bit more modest about some of my fishing successes: I didn't fool the trout into thinking my fly was food, just thinking it might be food and it's worth grabbing on to check it out.


Jason, I've watched juv trout in my river tank taste touch, rising to and brushing their lower jaw (closed mouth) on drifting objects. I've seen these "false rises" when fishing too.

I've also observed distrustful steelhead take yarn flies in the very tip of there jaws, just hold the fuzz, and assume taste it. I think they do it by negative pressure holding the fly there. When they ignore or avoid a fly completely they can let the fly pass, even roll along their hydrofoil bodies. But is they so choose they can intercept a fly and hold it with no chance of being hooked. And unless I'd seen it, I'd NEVER have detected it.

Your comment, "I didn't fool the trout into thinking my fly was food, just thinking it might be food and it's worth grabbing on to check it out." is an important distinction. As I've described it, there are fly patterns that say "FOOD!" if only temporarily.
PaulRobertsJanuary 7th, 2012, 2:29 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1776
I'm going to call attention the the following thread for it's relevance. I had almost tagged it to the above thread. Ralph Cutter commented too:

http://www.troutnut.com/topic/2516/Caddis-Pupae-Question
EntomanJanuary 7th, 2012, 4:38 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
I've also observed distrustful steelhead take yarn flies in the very tip of there jaws, just hold the fuzz, and assume taste it.


I've noted this behavior as well, Paul. Also with big browns and pacific salmon. A chartreuse colored yarn (egg) pattern seems to really motivate this behavior. I speculated it was triggering a "nest tending" instinct, not necessarily a feeding or tasting response. I'd be really interested to hear what you and Jason have to say about this possible explanation.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
PaulRobertsJanuary 8th, 2012, 9:37 am
Colorado

Posts: 1776
I've also observed distrustful steelhead take yarn flies in the very tip of there jaws, just hold the fuzz, and assume taste it.


I've noted this behavior as well, Paul. Also with big browns and pacific salmon. A chartreuse colored yarn (egg) pattern seems to really motivate this behavior. I speculated it was triggering a "nest tending" instinct, not necessarily a feeding or tasting response. I'd be really interested to hear what you and Jason have to say about this possible explanation.

I've heard of that behavior too -hens "removing" flies from the redd with their jaws -but only with Chinooks. (I never bothered fish on redds, esp those "55gal drums with fins". More interesting and less meddlesome fishign to be had just before and after actual spawning. I assume it's the same for you.) The ones I've seen were not tending redds.

SofthackleJanuary 9th, 2012, 10:37 pm
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
After reading the post on ascending caddis and seeing this revisited, I thought I'd post this fly which was tied by my very good friend Ray Tucker. Ray is a great tier, and a wingless wet fly enthusiast. I must give him all the credit on this one. This one in particular reminded me of an ascending caddis. Look at the same fly wet. Notice the hook profile, and it's up eye! Great for caddis imitation. Tell me what you think.

Mark




"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
EntomanJanuary 10th, 2012, 2:44 am
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Gorgeous fly, Mark. It's perfectly tied and the material selection is inspired. The short, sparse spikiness of the thorax allows the hackles to halo the body for a very natural effect.

As far as hook selection goes... Personally, I'm not not a big fan of scud hooks for soft hackles and the bottom photo illustrates why. When dry, the huge bend is obscured by the body extending well into the bend and makes the fly look very graceful and appealing to the eye (which probably explains their popular use). When wet however, the graceful curve of the body is obscured and a thin tag juts down through the halo. It is an awkward imitation of the curve apparent in the abdomen of some caddis species, but way too thin. The whole point of the sparse abdomen is to provide a hint of color showing through the halo of hackle, not imitate the stout body of the natural. This is lost when it juts downward naked and thin. This exposure also results in the huge bend and point becoming over-emphasized and way too visually dominant. The same pattern tied on a smaller, regular wet fly hook where the whole body remains in the halo would be more in keeping with the intent of the style, less dominated by the hook, and a far superior imitation, IMHO. I know these hooks have become very popular and tiers are always willing to experiment; my opinion is just something to think about.

Regards,

Kurt
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
SofthackleJanuary 10th, 2012, 10:42 am
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
Hi Kurt,
I can not argue with your very insightful and logical explanation regarding the usage of the scud/caddis style hook. The only thing I can say is they "illogically" work very well. Two of the most successful patterns I've ever used are tied on the curved scud/caddis style hook.

The first is Hans Weilenmann's Partridge and Olive Emerger seen here:
http://www.danica.com/flytier/hweilenmann/partridge_olive_emerger.htm

The second is Jim Slattery's Triple Threat Caddis seen here:
http://www.danica.com/flytier/jslattery/olive_triple_threat_caddis.htm

I've caught many many trout on these two patterns and so have those that fished with me. Perhaps it is a confidence thing, I don't know, but I know they work. Perhaps our logical and discerning eye tells us the things you have said, but I'm not sure the trout think this stuff out the way we do. Perhaps they just don't have the time. It's eat it or go hungry. Sometime, fly fishing success IS illogical.

Mark
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
FalsiflyJanuary 10th, 2012, 11:28 am
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 657
This is lost when it juts downward naked and thin. This exposure also results in the huge bend and point becoming over-emphasized and way too visually dominant.


I’m curious as to what degree the profile would be duplicated, in the second photo, under normal fishing conditions? Obviously the wetted hackle, as placed in the vise, is due to the stickiness of water’s surface tension. I think the profile, approaching that of the second photo, would be a result of the flies relative motion and velocity through the water. However, wouldn’t the hackle have a tendency to take a shape more representative of that of the first photo in a dead drift presentation?
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
SofthackleJanuary 10th, 2012, 11:54 am
Site Editor
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 540
Yes, it would during that relaxed period, but if you are gently taking the fly toward you and working the fly in, the hackles would encase the body as it is being retrieved. I think this is part of the appeal of these flies-the motion of the fly and the hackle expanding and collapsing. While these flies can be fished dead drift, the true beauty is when you activate them and make them come alive. This was the purpose of the "flymph" as Hidy described it-a mimic of the hatching ascending insect. While this is not a flymph by the definition of the term, it is very close-more a soft-hackle, but the retrieve can do the same.

Mark
"I have the highest respect for the skilled wet-fly fisherman, as he has mastered an art of very great difficulty." Edward R. Hewitt

Flymphs, Soft-hackles and Spiders: http://www.troutnut.com/libstudio/FS&S/index.html
EntomanJanuary 10th, 2012, 5:29 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Mark -

The only thing I can say is they "illogically" work very well.

Oh, I know they do, otherwise competent anglers like yourself would have long since dropped them. I don't know how illogical it is though. Many insects adopt that "dipping wasp" look when dead or dying in the drift. Once the fly is moving, it can certainly be argued the hackle and dubbed body are more important triggers than the subtle shape of the body/hook anyway. It's all about trade-offs. I use these hooks all the time when I find it desirable to imitate a more robust body (as with the two patterns in your last post).

Anyway, we are just having a fun discussion about design criteria and purpose, and they always have almost as many "answers" as there are opinions. What can't be argued is that the triggering features that cause a trout to rise are what we are always looking for - and they can never be fully quantified. Thank God, or most of the fun would be stripped away. Sometimes intuition is as valuable as reason.;)

Al -

I’m curious as to what degree the profile would be duplicated, in the second photo, under normal fishing conditions?

Never. Even in the fastest currents hackles will flow freely more or less straight and inline with the shank. How far out from the shank depends on the stiffness of material and angle of the shoulder. A good example of this is seen in photos of wet streamers out of the water that have their tails tapering to a more or less perfect minnow shape. Working in the water they look more like a paint brush with the tail end of the wing as wide as the middle. The idea of soft hackle "collapsing" around the hook shank under tension in fast currents is a holdover myth from the days prior to underwater photography and a clear understanding of how materials respond to flows.

However, wouldn’t the hackle have a tendency to take a shape more representative of that of the first photo in a dead drift presentation?

Yes, you are absolutely right. Which gets to the main point of what the primary trigger of the soft hackle/flymph style is. As Mark has so eloquently put many times, it's the subtle movement of the hackle/dubbing under varying degrees of tension or lack thereof. Those that fish soft hackles on the swing only are missing out on quite alot.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
MartinlfNovember 19th, 2015, 5:17 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2978
OK, here it is. Lots of interesting information in this about the gas bubble in caddis emergers, and some beautiful soft hackles from our old friend Mark. I hope all the links still work.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
ByhaughFebruary 27th, 2016, 3:10 pm
Hawaii

Posts: 56
Wifly:

Gary LaFontaine is a "hero" of mine. I have met him twice and have some flies he tied in a plate. Love re-reading his books and articles.

As to the quote in "The Beginner's Guide to Caddis" and, many other books for that matter, do you believe the author(s) are they repeating what they have read or are actually reporting on their own observations/study.

Gary wrote his articles and books at a time when a lot of what he wrote about was ground-breaking. Prior to Gary, the Caddis was not the ubiquitous insect imitation that it has grown to be. Many early fly fishing authors mentioned the caddis, but discounted their importance to the fly fisher! Imagine that!!
They often dispelled their importance, due in part, to their "....hatch occurring in the evening......(presumably after the end of the fishing day).
OldredbarnFebruary 27th, 2016, 6:40 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2599
Gary wrote his articles and books at a time when a lot of what he wrote about was ground-breaking. Prior to Gary, the Caddis was not the ubiquitous insect imitation that it has grown to be. Many early fly fishing authors mentioned the caddis, but discounted their importance to the fly fisher! Imagine that!!
They often dispelled their importance, due in part, to their "....hatch occurring in the evening......(presumably after the end of the fishing day).


Byron,

Have you read Thomas Ames' book mentioned below? That is the thesis of his second chapter and he does a wonder job also tracing the problem back to Halford and the early days of dry fly fishing doctrine where the caddis larva/worm was looked down upon. :)

“Caddisflies and the American Angling Tradition” Thomas Ames
-Chapter two of “Caddisflies: A Guide to Eastern Species for Anglers and Other Naturalists”

His book is a beautiful one. He's a photographer and the pics included are great. The second chapter is also a great outline of the angling literature going all the way back to Dame Juliana Berners. There are a few folks not mentioned, but someone interested in the history of the sport could gain a great deal of information and direction there.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
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