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triggers, or match the hatch?


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16 replies to this topic

#1 DarrellP

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 08:26 AM

Seems like some people try to find a trigger, such as rubber legs, hot spots, Peacock herl, etc. Some try to match the hatch. Seems like Warm water tying is focused on triggers, Trout and Salt mostly match the hatch. Smallmouth Bass tying blurs the line. For fishing flies, do you guys find yourself matching the hatch or focusing on triggers? Do you agree with my thoughts or am I making a distinction where there is not one? Sometimes I read and think too much...
"Calling fishing a hobby is like calling brain surgery a job." John Geirach

#2 mikechell

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 08:36 AM

I've tried to tie flies to match the forage for the sunfish and bass I fish for.  Grass shrimp, 3/4" minnows, etc.  None have been as successful as just tying on a flip flop foam popper or a "Panfish Attractor".

I don't know if I am tying "triggers" ... but I'm definitely NOT matching the hatch anymore.  I tie up some flies, I fish them.  If they get hits, I tie some more.  If not, I go back to my favorites.


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#3 flytire

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 09:32 AM

For fishing flies, do you guys find yourself matching the hatch or focusing on triggers?

 

both


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#4 Philly

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 10:15 AM

I'm not sure I try to match the hatch.   With trout I've come to think that mayfly hatches are a special dinner for them.   Particularly here in SE PA.   We have some streams that have decent hatches.  I tie generic patterns for them like the Usual.  Use wrapped CDC for the body since it gives me a better selection of matching colors than the standard snowshoe rabbit dubbing used in the original pattern.  Mostly I fish caddis and midge drys.  Nymphs are in the streams all the time, but still generic patterns work rather than tying a detailed nymph.   For warm water, I have had decent luck with bait fish patterns.  These I do tie as realistic as possible, trying to match the size and coloring of the bait fish in the stream or lake.  I'm in the same school of thought as Mike with pan fish.  Give them something that creates the illusion of life/food.  Smallmouth  flies can be blurry.  This is one of my favorites for smallmouth, and also pan fish. 

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I have no idea what they think it is.  I mainly tie them in yellow or white.  Because of the shape they be fished as a top water or off a intermediate or sinking line.  

I guess I lean more toward fishing "triggers" but will match the hatch in a generic way.

 

 

 

 


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#5 Mark Knapp

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 12:49 PM

I tie imitations mostly. There's something about tricking a fish with a nice fake.

 

I wonder if the triggers aren't an imitation of something, a color or an action that means something or maybe fish just like shiny things like birds and women do.



#6 Sandan

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 02:25 PM

Agree with flytire. Both, depends on what's being tied, water conditions, etc,., etc., etc.



#7 Flicted

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Posted 19 February 2019 - 02:31 PM

Both.  But often an imitation of a natural can be enhanced by addition of a red tag, chartreuse or other color added to the natural, flash, or other trigger. 



#8 DFoster

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 10:29 AM

I tie and carry both.   That way once the local trout are finished mocking me by rejecting my well thought out and carefully presented offerings, I can resort to changing out numerous flies one after the other.   - When I'm fortunate I happen on a pattern they like that day. 


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#9 tjm

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 03:35 PM

Both to some extent but my match-the-hatch flies are not exact imitations, they are "close enough' imitations.

 

How does one match the hatch when there is none?  Fish don't know what any of the things they mouth are, if it is a food shape and a food size it must be food. Food suggestive flies get mouthed, and sometimes hook up. If a perfect (from our human view)  imitation fly gets mouthed or eaten, it is because it acted as a trigger.



#10 Poopdeck

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 08:34 PM

My opinion is steeped in the fact that I am not a fly fishing only angler. It's based on many decades of enjoying all types of fishing and fishing for a great many species on a seasonal basis as I do all my fishing. I fish freshwater, saltwater, big water, little water and hard water. Cold water = walleye, really cold water = ice fishing, spring is a mix between stripers, shad and trout with a spattering of salt water stripers and drum. Warmer weather is flounder, catfish and pannies. Summer is bass, fall is bass and walleye and hitting the salt for stripers. It's a wonderful world. With that said, I view the whole match the hatch as a style or mindset of trout only fly fishing aficionados.

First, I believe even the best of tied fly in no way resembles what it's suppose to. Not even close so right off the bat the hatch is not being matched by any standard in nature.

Second, my trout fishing success is based largely on generic patterns like a hares ear (the fly I use the most), PT Nymphs and Adams in various colors that are made to look like many possible things. So this isn't matching the hatch to any true standard either.

Third, I find I catch more fish, like all fish, when I get the right presentation with a generic pattern then I do when I don't get the right presentation. Let's face it, there are places on moving water where you may only get a few feet of perfect presentation regardless of what you do.

And finally, when there is a prolific hatch going on and the fish are looking up, they wont turn down a perfectly presented large streamer or a big fat juicy night crawler over a size 20 real bug.

I think matching the hatch as more of a style of fishing not a must do. In other words, some guys love sitting on the bank just waiting for the dusk hatch to cast a similar looking thing to see if they can fool a trout on a fly amongst all the real things. This is great, this is how some enjoy fishing and how they challenge themselves while fishing it's just not the only way to catch fish.

So are one mans opinions. Yours may vary

#11 spiralspey

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 01:04 AM

I'm pretty much a match the hatch guy. Almost all the flies I tie and fish are meant to look like something the fish I'm after either are, or would likely, eat. My flies dont have hot spots, overly long rubber legs, or extra flash, I try and make them look like or at least represent real prey.

#12 DFoster

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 08:29 AM

Second, my trout fishing success is based largely on generic patterns like a hares ear (the fly I use the most), PT Nymphs and Adams in various colors that are made to look like many possible things. So this isn't matching the hatch to any true standard either.

Third, I find I catch more fish, like all fish, when I get the right presentation with a generic pattern then I do when I don't get the right presentation. Let's face it, there are places on moving water where you may only get a few feet of perfect presentation regardless of what you do.

 

I completely agree-  I believe presentation is more important than pattern.  I've had plenty of fish grab a small fluorescent orange football  indicator back when I used one while ignoring well tied nymphs.  I have a hard time imagining what natural they would mistake an indicator for but as a food trigger the size and drift were correct.

 

The madness of trying to think like a fish with a brain the size of a pea is all part of the fun!


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#13 DarrellP

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 08:36 AM

I tie imitations mostly. There's something about tricking a fish with a nice fake.
 
I wonder if the triggers aren't an imitation of something, a color or an action that means something or maybe fish just like shiny things like birds and women do.


Having had a couple wives, three daughters and work with 40 women, I have to agree. Lol
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#14 Flicted

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 10:44 AM

" First, I believe even the best of tied fly in no way resembles what it's suppose to. Not even close so right off the bat the hatch is not being matched by any standard in nature. "

I disagree with this part although I get what you're saying overall. Most mayfly patterns look very much like mayflies, most caddis patterns look like caddisflies, etc. I never get caught up in deciding if a natural is olive-brown vs golden olive. That is marketing, not science. But if I see that fish are eating midges, I will use a midge imitation. Depending on the type of rise, that midge decision may be a dry or an emerger. I use hoppers in summer when they are present because they look like hoppers. I don't use hoppers in early spring because there are other things hatching and present as food. Sure, you could probably catch an odd trout on a hopper pattern in winter. But there is something to be said for targeting fish with what they are feeding on.

#15 Poopdeck

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 06:06 PM

No where near a match to the hatch for my superior brain, in comparison to a fish brain of course. If this is a match to a fish brain then match the hatch matters far less to fish then angler.

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