Flies for Fly Fishing

The great appeal of fly fishing is that it is easy to learn and a lot of fun, and can be done from almost anywhere, from a lakeshore to a boat. The essential equipment is a fly rod, a line, and, of course, some flies. We’re going to help you master fly fishing by covering the best types of flies, some different types of flies, and patterns to make flies.

Fly fishing is fun and easy to learn. You can fly fish anywhere, from the shore of a lake or from a boat. To start fly fishing you need a fly rod, a line and some artificial flies. Learn what are the best fly fishing flies you can use, aquatic insects, streamers, and fly fishing flies patterns.

Fly Fishing Starter Flies

Flies are made to look like bugs, hence the name. They imitate aquatic and terrestrial insects such as midges, caddisflies, stoneflies, dragonflies, damselflies, and mayflies, at their immature and adult life stages.

Each fish species has its preferred insect, so it’s important to use flies that will attract the fish species that are present in your waters. If your only local gamefish are panfish, it’s useless to spend your time tying flies for trout.

Types of Flies

Catalogs and shops usually organize flies into three categories: dry flies, nymphs or wet flies, and streamers.

Dry flies mimic the appearance of adult insects floating on the water’s surface. They effectively imitate caddisflies, midges, grasshoppers, ants, crickets, and mayflies, among others. Dry flies are often deployed when anglers see a hatch or notice a trout surfacing.

Nymphs and wet flies replicate the immature state of caddisflies, stoneflies, mayflies, and others. They’re known as “wet” because they are fished under the surface of the water, imitating aquatic insects swimming upwards to the surface. Plan ahead to use nymphs and wet flies in the window of time just before a hatch of water-born insects.

Streamers are a larger kind of fly that are very useful in fishing for the largest species like trout, bass, and panfish, as well as saltwater species like tarpon, bonefish, striped bass, and redfish. However, they also have good results with many small species. Streamers can resemble leaches, minnows, or sculpins.

Salmon Flies and Saltwater Flies are also very popular, and come in many different forms to mimic food items like crab, shrimp, and different kinds of baitfish. These flies are used to land trout, bass, panfish, steelhead, bonefish, tarpon, and Atlantic and Pacific salmon.

Fly Sizes

The number given to a fly size depends on the size of the hook it is tied to. The larger the number is, the smaller the fly, and for sizes smaller than #2, it is always an even number. So a #18 Adams will be smaller than a #12 Adams, with a difference of four hook sizes between them.

Very large hooks are referred to as “ought” sizes, so a hook or fly that is 1/0 will be known as a “one-ought” or “one-oh.”