While a better understanding of entomology has advanced fly tying in many areas, stonefly patterns are pretty much the same as 20 years ago. This month's article will deal with the big stoneflies: salmonflies and golden stoneflies. Next month I'll cover patterns for smaller stoneflies.
Little Black Stoneflies are one of the first major hatches on many trout streams. When on the water, the adults flutter their wings rapidly. The split CDC wing of this pattern helps mimic the fluttering wings of the adult little black stonefly.
Have a very fine point Very nicely decorated scissors. Put's my others to shame!
Fly anglers love stoneflies, and so do the trout. After a long, cold winter of drifting minuscule midge imitations in front of persnickety fish, there is nothing like chucking large and visible dry flies in front of voracious trout. Unlike dropping dainty emergers and duns during mayfly season, the sound and motion from a well-placed stonefly pattern signifies a dinner bell for all takers. This movement elicits savage strikes from hungry trout.
Fly fishing stonefly patterns has its advantages over other insect species. Two main reasons for their big significance in fly fishing world would be first their availability and secondly, their size. They are widely spread insects and can be found on every continent except Antarctica.
In the picture we can see a foam strap of 2mm thick and 5mm of width, curved in the middle and with its tips cut to make the tails. In the other curved foam strap, we see the brown quill hackle colors in the right position, with the quill remnant part inside of what will be the abdomen. Carefully, keeping the tying thread inside the foam with the tails, make the first segment with four turns.
Little Black Stone created by John Collins. This pattern imitates the early season little black and brown stonefly nymphs common in the Eastern United States. The pattern is basically a beadhead Flashback Pheasant Tail nymph, but tied using dyed black pheasant tail and dyed black peacock herl and a silver rib instead of the traditional copper.
Designing a fly pattern rarely starts at the tying bench. For me, it most often starts with a vague idea, a spark, that glows and gets kicked around a fair bit in my head before I ever even sit down to try it. Sometimes, that spark turns out to be a complete dud, and thankfully, those make themselves apparent pretty quickly.
Stoneflies are a major diet component of trout around the world. Steelhead eat them under the right conditions too. Like Caddis Fliesmicro- to macro-size Stoneflies are incredibly diverse in size, color and behavior.
They are synonymous with the famous stonefly hatches that occur on most rivers and streams of North America. In some western states, these hatches have an almost cult-like following as anglers move upstream along with emergences as they progress. Imagine the biggest trout in the river exploding onto the surface as it engulfs another fluttering adult stonefly.