I've been planning a Spring (should it ever happen) experiment with Baetis emergers. There are so many variations and each guaranteed to be the best. I've tied up quite a few different styles to test one against the other.
I think they all work some of the time. Would like to hear opinions on what you think are the critical factors for these little guys. Number one for me is size, then silhouette, and finally color. This is the only species where I've seen it make a difference. Has anyone else had color matter?
Expanding on the color theme a bit, I've noticed that two-tones of olive (lighter abdomen, darker thorax) make the strike rate increase. Also the hackle(leg color) seems to matter. This one uses an olive dun rather than a gray dun hackle. Last color comment is about the shuck. Golden brown matches the nymph. I've never seen a nymph that looked olive or dun or any other color but golden brown. You can see I tie mine very sparse too, but then I'm off on a tangent. Would like to share thoughts and experiences.
I can't really state much I've only been tying for about 3 months and just picked up fly fishing over the summer so I'm pretty new but for me fishing a 100% wild stream in Tennessee for Browns I think your right the color doesn't seem to matter much were supposed to have all bwo's right now but every fly I catch from each hatch seems to be the same yellow or pale yellow so you tell me. The only difference I can see is they went from size 14-16 now 18-22 sizes seem to work the best
I'm glad to have your response John. As to the yellow versus pale olive (olive is after all a yellow green), I'm guessing your stream has its own particular color variation. When I fish different streams here in PA, I encounter lots of color variation. Must admit to not seeing yellow although some flies have been pretty pale.
The size difference is something that all of us fishing BWO patterns encounter. The downsized little flies are pretty common hereabouts. They used to be called Pseudocleon but the whole taxonomic ID has been changed and jumbled repeatedly. Now there all lumped into Baetidea.
These little flies do have one trait that I use to ID them. They only have two tails. Next time you catch a tiny one, check that out.
I'm really looking to confirm my own observations. Having a reply like yours is very helpful.
I've had refusals on size 14s only to have the same exact fly in a 16 get pounded by fish after fish. Ditto on 16's to 18's. From there the real fun begins. One local stream that gets heavy pressure and in addition is catch and release, becomes a nightmare trying to find the size they will accept. As I age, seeing, then tying on sizes down to 26, becomes a nightmare. If you add the issue of "are they taking nymphs, emergers, or adults" I sometimes just give up and tie on an ant. LOL
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