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Zebra midges - your favorite version?


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44 replies to this topic

#16 flytire

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 07:34 AM

img_8191.jpg

 

mercury midges


Fly tying - The art of attaching feathers, fur, wool, and silk to a tiny hook to create artificial lures that imitate insects, a skill easily mastered by anyone who can peel a grape blindfolded with a pair of tweezers and a butter knife while wearing oven mitts.


#17 tjm

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 08:11 AM

I find Pat Dorsey’s Mercury Midges to be more effective, on the waters I fish, than Zebra Midges.

I thought that was a zebra midge?



#18 Flicted

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 09:06 AM

Zebra Midge is a pattern. Therefore there should only be one "version". My favorite midge emerger is Palomino Midge if that's what you're asking.

#19 SBPatt

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 09:36 AM

IMG_3013_zpsd5c2df9c.jpg

 
 
I keep them basic; I usually lose a bunch and the fish like these well enough.  Sometimes I'll swap the metal bead for a mercury silver glass one; (lack of) weight is not really an issue since I fish them in tandem with a weighted scud and add split shot above the flies.
 
 
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#20 mikechell

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 12:26 PM

 

I find Pat Dorsey’s Mercury Midges to be more effective, on the waters I fish, than Zebra Midges.

I thought that was a zebra midge?

 

As I understand it ... the Zebra Midge is wire rib on a black body, and the Mercury Midge is wire rib on a white body.

 

I can definitely see how one would work better than the other in different conditions.


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#21 flytire

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 12:56 PM

No

A Mercury Midge uses a silver lined glass/plastic bead. Hence the Mercury color and the name

https://www.theyarna...ct-p/miy6-1.htm

A zebra Midge is a silver bead (brass or tungsten), silver wire and black thread just like Scott posted above. As with just about any fly out the the thread, wire and bead can be any color you want

Fly tying - The art of attaching feathers, fur, wool, and silk to a tiny hook to create artificial lures that imitate insects, a skill easily mastered by anyone who can peel a grape blindfolded with a pair of tweezers and a butter knife while wearing oven mitts.


#22 mikechell

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 01:16 PM

Understood ... I was basing my comment on Pat Dorsey's site ...

 

https://www.patdorse...-yet-effective/


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#23 tjm

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 01:22 PM

I have seen advertisements for both in multiple colors red, white, green, black, olive, brown. see flytire's post above for red, white and black Mercury Midges. I recently saw a how to tie  "Dorsey's Mercury Zebra Midge", I got the impression that the mercury part was due the Caddis glass head. I now know more than I did.

 

I do have flies tied in the early that look identical except the bead head. 



#24 chugbug27

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 01:29 PM

Here is some more extensive info on the zebra midge with variations and SBS's.

http://stevenojai.tr...zebra_midge.htm

Midges are a great way to start the path into bug-driven fly tying and fly fishing, as they are easy to tie without expensive material and seem to me anyways to work year-round in almost every trout water.
cb27

#25 DavidR

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 01:36 PM

Sorry didn’t mean to do a drive by hijack of Lucian’s great bugs.

But in simple terms, I think the bead head is the major difference ...using silver lined glass/plastic bead as flytire mentioned as opposed to a brass or tungsten weighted bead ...this not only affects sink rate unless used like Scott but also puts what appears to be a small air bubble at the head of the midge, something one will see in some underwater images of bugs not just midges....I also use mercury baetis nymphs with great success.

#26 chugbug27

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 01:57 PM

I like to also tie some with a tiny dun hackle and a shoot of snowshoe or CDC off the head, in place of a bead, for hanging midges that float pre-emergence on a calm surface. Despite the oversize floating mechanism they work well (most of it is above the water line so the trout mainly see the body hanging vertically and a small surface disturbance, that's my theory anyways).
cb27

#27 Mark Knapp

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 05:24 PM

My head is spinning. The two midges, one is a Zebra and one is a Mercury, they are pretty much the same except for the change of the bead, and maybe wire color. They are different (published?) patterns. This would indicate to me, that sometimes a subtle difference would validate a different pattern. With other flies is seems one could change quite a bit and it would still be a variant of the same fly.

 

I'm not bucking it, or complaining, just pointing it out. It's not my intent to merge the other thread with this one.



#28 planettrout

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Posted 27 November 2018 - 07:38 PM

I have always enjoyed your ties Lucian. The link that was put up by chugbug27, to Steve Schalla's site, features many of the patterns that I have found useful in the Eastern Sierra and in Montana. Although this isn't strictly a Zebra Midge, it is a Paul Freeman pattern that he developed for the San Juan River. It has served me well over the past couple of seasons...

 

RDB39vJ.jpg

 

 

PT/TB


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#29 Flicted

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Posted 28 November 2018 - 01:16 PM

Mark, understand the head spin. Blue Winged Olive and Blue Dun are the same except the body color. Mickey Finn and Black Nosed Dace are two of my favorite streamer flies and they are almost identical except for the color. Yellow, Red, Yellow and Brown, Black, White. Rumor has it the "original" pattern for the Dace called for black bear and brown bear. I use white and brown bucktail and black bear. But in a black and white photo, it would be hard to tell them apart.

#30 salmobytes

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Posted 06 December 2018 - 09:43 AM

I like the Lucian Vasies flies above.  Very nice.  

 

Zebra Midges are interesting because they are not realistic.  No real midge has that much high contrast banding. And yet Zebra Midges consistently out-fish duller, more mottled more realistic flies of the same size and shape.  Someone needs to right write a new book called "Not Matching the Hatch." 


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