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The Specimen

The Discussion

MartinlfAugust 9th, 2007, 8:27 am
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
These photos show a darker invaria spinner than I'm used to seeing. I know color varies a good bit in invaria nymphs and duns, so I suppose color variation is pretty wide with the spinners also, correct?
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
KonchuAugust 9th, 2007, 9:53 am
Site Editor

Posts: 505
Some people claim to notice two distinctive forms: a light one and a dark one that are separated by time. Others think that the temporal variation includes all the colors. Previously, I leaned towards the latter opinion.

Honestly, I now think it is up for debate. Any thoughts??? Inquiring minds want to know...
GrabbitAugust 9th, 2007, 1:27 pm
Columbus, OH

Posts: 21
The spinner pictured must have stayed in the sun too long. MartinIF... your type of invaria spinners are undoubtedly using excellent sun screens. Check and see if they are using more than a SPF of 30. Actually I am curious to know if color variances show up in the DNA codes of the same species, or if the codes are identical from bug to bug and river to river.

The short answer is YES there is much variation in ALL mayflys... when fishing different rivers I have noted wing color to be different as well as leg and of course body color. I adapt my fly patterns to suit specific needs.

Dry flys get darker when wet. I use gink as a floatant, as Im sure many here do. It is tempting to use dubbing right out of the package... not always a good idea. I blend my dubbing using a small coffee grinder. I will blend until the dubbing matches the real thing when gink is applied. Mabye this is a little 'over the top' as they say... but when I fish to a slob I dont want to second guess myself about something as simple as color. The odds always favor the trout, that being the case I'll do most anything to improve my odds. Knowing the true color of a natural and blending dubbing accordingly seems to be a very simple thing to do on my end.

Finally, photographs of bugs can be deceiving. Jason does a wonderful job of delivering excellent (true to color) pictures of bugs. I indeed admire his work with the camera but caution tyers not use his photographs as the 'final' model. Instead if at all possible collect bugs from the water that you will be fishing, match these at the tying bench and all will be fine. I once made the mistake of tying pink hennys for a river that required olive hennys... it made for a long afternoon with lots of looks and zero takes. I am certain these things only happen to me.
Fishing with nymphs is for fat little kids... man up and throw a dry.
KonchuAugust 9th, 2007, 2:30 pm
Site Editor

Posts: 505
Grabbit, your question about DNA variation is a good one. Currently, I'm working on getting DNA from lots of different species to see how it varies. Several folks from this site are sending me specimens for a large-scale project.

A former grad student at the Univ of Maryland was working on Ephemerella invaria group DNA variation a few years ago and had preliminary results that showed at least a couple of clusters within what I called invaria (a broad concept). However, the data were limited and we needed some external comparisons.
MartinlfAugust 9th, 2007, 7:10 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Good points, Grabbit. No, I personally don't think it's over the top to check dubbing colors wet; I do it myself. Good luck with the DNA studies Konchu. Love the Donne quote; it's from a favorite of mine. Do you know the Marlowe poem that started the theme, and Ralegh's reply?
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
KonchuAugust 9th, 2007, 8:07 pm
Site Editor

Posts: 505
This was Donne's somewhat humorous response to Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love" (over the top). Sir Walter Raleigh replied with "The Nymph's Reply to the Shepherd." And the Beatles responded by cursing SWR to get a little peace of mind. (I cheated a little on the first two with my high school English poetry book. Didn't much like it then, but it grows on ya...)
MartinlfAugust 9th, 2007, 10:19 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Yes!! All good fun to see those folks playing with the same theme. Donne's is particularly interesting though, because of the way he turns so many of the cliches inside out in the fifth and sixth stanzas and makes the whole thing edgy.

John Donne - The Bait

Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines, and silver hooks.

There will the river whispering run
Warm'd by thy eyes, more than the sun;
And there the 'enamour'd fish will stay,
Begging themselves they may betray.

When thou wilt swim in that live bath,
Each fish, which every channel hath,
Will amorously to thee swim,
Gladder to catch thee, than thou him.

If thou, to be so seen, be'st loth,
By sun or moon, thou dark'nest both,
And if myself have leave to see,
I need not their light having thee.

Let others freeze with angling reeds,
And cut their legs with shells and weeds,
Or treacherously poor fish beset,
With strangling snare, or windowy net.

Let coarse bold hands from slimy nest
The bedded fish in banks out-wrest;
Or curious traitors, sleeve-silk flies,
Bewitch poor fishes' wand'ring eyes.

For thee, thou need'st no such deceit,
For thou thyself art thine own bait:
That fish, that is not catch'd thereby,
Alas, is wiser far than I.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
KonchuAugust 10th, 2007, 5:30 am
Site Editor

Posts: 505
It is very edgy. All about conceit and narcissism.

If you're really in touch with the fish, the bugs, or any other aspect of nature, you'll be enthralled, but put squarely in your place when you try to understand truly how it all works together. There's always a new complication, a new twist, always an exception. Occasionally, we figure it out...but only for a little while; then we learn the error of our ways and have to begin the journey again. Flyfishing exemplifies this poetic beauty.
MartinlfAugust 10th, 2007, 5:44 am
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Yikes, I've hijacked my own thread, but couldn't resist. Here's another fishy poem about mysterious things that have an uncontrollable attraction. It's one of Gonzo's favorites, so perhaps it will get a rise out of him. I know he's lurking from time to time. :)

The Song of the Wandering Aengus
by William Butler Yeats

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.

When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire aflame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And some one called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.

"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Shawnny3August 10th, 2007, 6:17 am
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
So it's come to this, posting poetry to try to lure Gonzo out of hiding. I mean, I'm no literature prof, but I think that last one was about a fish turning into a woman! Shamelessly low, Louis. If that doesn't get Gonzo's fish-obsessed soul to respond, nothing will.


P.S. I quite enjoyed both poems, Louis. I don't know that I understand them fully after one reading, but that's probably why I like them.
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
JADAugust 10th, 2007, 12:19 pm
Alexandria Pa

Posts: 362

Well said Shawnny3, That's exactly what I was thinking.

My mother would be proud of me.

John Dunn --No not the poet


They fasten red (crimson red) wool around a hook, and fix onto the wool two feathers which grow under a cockís wattles, and which in colour are like wax.
Radcliffe's Fishing from the Earliest Times,

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