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> > Stupid question...Perhaps?

BellsporterFebruary 2nd, 2011, 9:47 pm
boulder colorado

Posts: 18
New to this site. I was wondering if there was a section devoted to pictures of specimens next to the flies they are supposed to mimic? Being a novice, it is difficult to see the similarities between the flies and the actual BUGS.
FredHFebruary 3rd, 2011, 6:40 am
Lake Charles , Louisiana

Posts: 108
This is something I have touched on when asked to do semminars on tying immatative or realistic flies. Many fishermen across the country
( probably not the guys on this site)know that a royal coachmen and a hare's ear nymph are very effective flies, but have no idea what insect they are meant to represent. Many hatch charts include effective fly patterns you might try when a certain hatch is occurring. Some patterns are an impressionistic representation of an insect where as others will incorperate features that might bring on a trigger reflex in the fish.When I tie a pattern to immitate a caddis when a hatch is occurring I tie a fly that looks like this.
TaxonFebruary 3rd, 2011, 8:43 am
Site Editor
Royse City, TX

Posts: 1350

Actually, the are no stupid questions, just stupid questioners. They are the ones who distinguish themselves by not asking a question for fear of appearing stupid.

There is one website of which I'm aware that does an outstanding job of showing the naturals of each lifestage, and suggesting patterns to imitate them. That website is, which is operated by Oregon flyfishing writer, Scott Richmond.

The page displaying the natural doesn't actually contain a photo of the suggested patterns alongside the natural, as that would probably not be very practical space-wise. However, there is a hyperlink for each pattern suggested to imitate each lifestage, which not only displays a nice photo of the tied fly, but also suggests manufacturer hook number, hook size range, and a list of materials required to tie the fly.

Incidentally, I suggest you add your geographic location (Colorado) to your profile, as it will then display with each of your posts. This will really help those who respond to one of your questions, but don't have the time or energy to try to research your geographic location.

And, for any other registered user who is reading this post, and doesn't have a geographic location in your profile, please consider doing so now. :-)
Best regards,
Roger Rohrbeck
Jmd123February 3rd, 2011, 1:15 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
There are no stupid questions, only stupid answers...


P.S. Nice caddis imitation!
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
EntomanFebruary 3rd, 2011, 6:34 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Since we're posting stupid sayings about stupidity, dont forget "stupid is as stupid does"

I second Jonathon. Nice fly.

"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
TroutnutFebruary 3rd, 2011, 10:44 pm
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
there are no stupid questions

I've always disagreed with this old saying. There are lots of stupid questions, many of which come from stupid questioners. For example,

"I'm thinking about killing Bichael Boore, and I'm wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it. ... No, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out. Is this wrong?" --Blenn Geck

(Names changed to keep the example apolitical.)

The bold text is proof positive of the existence of stupid questions.

Of course that's totally irrelevant to the current discussion, but the cliche that "there are no stupid questions" has always been a pet peeve of mine so I had to get that off my chest. ;)

Anyway, to answer Bellsporter's non-stupid question, this site doesn't have a feature showing specimens next to the flies that mimic them. It's kind of difficult to set something like that up, because the mimicry often includes motion, the wetted color of the fly, air bubbles it may trap, the impression it makes on the surface of the water, etc. It would be a fun project to undertake sometime, but doing it right would be pretty time-consuming.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
EntomanFebruary 3rd, 2011, 11:06 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Ah no, Jason! Now you had to go and bring up politics...:)

Bellsporter - Hang around this site and you will pick it up pretty quickly. Especially the bug sections. Don't be shy about asking which flies to use for which bug when the question arises you can ask your questions right from there and they'll post directly to the forum for you. You will get lots of responses as the guys here want to help.

Good Journey,

"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
TroutnutFebruary 3rd, 2011, 11:41 pm
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
Now you had to go and bring up politics...:)

Fair enough, I changed the names to depoliticize my example. ;)
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
TroutnutFebruary 4th, 2011, 12:19 am
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
Of course, moments after I wrote the above, I saw a clip on TV of another personality from our fictional and anonymous Blenn Geck's totally politically neutral TV network. Let's call him Libb O'lierry. Ol' Libb has taken some heat recently for his foray into astrophysics, stating that he can conclusively prove divine intervention in the Universe as follows: "Tide goes in, tide goes out, it always happens, never a miscommunication."

Apparently, some knowitall smartasses on the internet are insisting that the moon causes the tides, and that this has been well-understood for centuries, and that it does not require daily communication and planning on the part of either the moon or the tides. Those snooty elites all like, "Ooh, look at me, I'm so smart, I took 8th grade science!" No doubt they're out of touch with the real world, sitting all high and mighty in the ivory towers of junior high school. Of course, Libb outsmarts those fools with another question they can't answer: "You pinheads who attacked me for this, you guys are just desperate. Look, how'd the moon get there? How'd the sun get there? How'd it get there?"

Another bold example of a stupid question. Of course, context matters. "How'd the moon get there?" was a great question in 1850. It's a great question if you're 5 years old, or if you were raised by wolves. Especially if you were raised by wolves, because you've spent some time howling at it. In this case, however, it's either a stupid question or a symptom of a tragic mental illness. And what really makes it stupid is not so much asking it (which would still be fine, if done out of innocent curiosity), but asking it as a "gotcha" with the insinuation that it is unanswerable.

This is also a good time to plug my "Raised by Wulvves" merchandise:

Apologies to Bellsporter for hijacking the thread! I couldn't help myself. I hope I answered your real question well enough earlier.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
BellsporterFebruary 4th, 2011, 3:15 am
boulder colorado

Posts: 18
Once again thanks for the helpful responses. So far Everyone here has been GREAT!
OldredbarnFebruary 4th, 2011, 8:48 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2608
This is also a good time to plug my "Raised by Wulvves" merchandise:


That has to be one of the more impressive segues I've ever seen...:)

Are you studying up there mister?! I think you need to stop rattling your own cage by tuning in to wack-o TV.

Take Care! When's the exam? Or whatever it is you need to get done up there...The sun is actually shining out front today and it's making me think about opening day and how few flies I have tied...

"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
Jmd123February 4th, 2011, 9:50 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
"Look, how'd the moon get there? How'd the sun get there? How'd it get there?"


The Moon was formed when the Earth got WHACKED by a body moving in the opposite direction with approximately the mass of the (currently existing) planet Mars. The fragments coalesced into a round body we now know as the Moon.

The Sun formed when a cloud of interstellar gas collapsed under its own gravitational force until it reached a density and temperature sufficient to ignite hydrogen fusion reactions within its core.

Just the amateur astronomer in me talking...does that answer your questions, little Billy??


P.S. Perhaps we ought to try to start a section on "bugs and their imitations" with photos? You guys out there with the good cameras...

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
BellsporterFebruary 4th, 2011, 4:40 pm
boulder colorado

Posts: 18
@JMD...I'd be happy with an ongoing dialog discussing fly patterns that suits whats going on locally. Be it in your neck of the woods or mine. Of course photos/bug identification/fly name would be great. I made it a goal of mine, that over the winter, I would become a more informed, knowledgable, and better fisherman come summertime. With that being said, it is difficult to streamline the information availiable on the internet, especially when your creek is frozen and there are no hands on, tangible, things to look at.

@Fred...I understand what you are getting at. I know a handful of flies that do well for me, especially during the summer months. My two concerns are that 1). Having a sucsessful day on the water is landing a fish or two. I don't have the knowledge to adapt to what is going on around me. 2). Sure I see bugs flying around. Sure, I look at the bugs and realize this is what i want to tie on. However, being new to the game, choosing the right fly to mimic the hatch, is troublesome. It might be in the presentation too. Sometimes I think the only fish I catch are the really stupid ones:)
Aaron7_8February 4th, 2011, 5:17 pm
Helena Montana

Posts: 115
Gotta love stupid fish. What a moral booster.
FredHFebruary 6th, 2011, 1:51 pm
Lake Charles , Louisiana

Posts: 108
If you don't get the specific info you need here ask at a fly shop near where you will be fishing. The local guides and area fishermen will have a good understanding of the local hatches and can let you know what patterns you should carry. Start a journal with photos, if you can , of the insects you see streamside. Post some photos of them here if you can't identify them. This is a great site for entomology questions.We can even suggest patterns from the photos of the insects.

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