Old Flies in New Dresses / How to Dress Dry Flies with the Wings in the Natural Position and Some New Wet Flies

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OLD FLIES IN NEW DRESSES


PLATE I

NATURAL FLIES

Swan Electric Engraving C?.

1.Alder-fly. Sialis lutaria, Linn. (Slightly enlarged.)
2.Caperer. Halesus radiatus, McLach.
3.Red Sedge. Anabolia nervosa, Steph. (Slightly enlarged.)
4.Welshman’s Button. Sericostoma collare, Pict.
5.Cinnamon-fly. Mystacides longicornis, Linn.
6.Grannom. Brachycentrus subnubilus, Curt.
7.Willow-fly. Leuctra geniculata, Steph.
8.Blue-bottle. Calliphora erythrocephala, Mg.
9.Green-bottle. Lucilia cæsar, Linn.
10.House-fly. Musca corvina, Fab.
11.Oak-fly. Leptis scolopacea, Linn.
12.Cow-dung-fly. Scatophaga stercoraria, Linn.
13.Hawthorn-fly. Bibio marci, Linn.
14.Corixa geoffroyi.
15.Fresh-water Shrimp. Gammarus pulex.

OLD FLIES
IN NEW DRESSES

HOW TO DRESS DRY FLIES
WITH THE WINGS IN THE NATURAL POSITION
AND SOME NEW WET FLIES

BY

CHARLES EDWARD WALKER

ILLUSTRATED BY THE AUTHOR AND EDWARD WILSON

London: LAWRENCE AND BULLEN, Ltd.
16 henrietta street, covent garden
mdcccxcviii

Richard Clay and Sons, Limited,
london and bungay.


PREFACE

In the first part of this little work I do not wish my reader to suppose that I claim to be the first who has dealt with any particular imitation in the manner he will find that I have dealt with it. In the case of particular flies, others have frequently observed that the imitations generally used were inaccurate. The imitation of the Alder-fly has perhaps been most treated in this way, but it is not alone. One instance, however, of inaccuracies in imitations of natural flies having been observed, will I hope not be trespassing too much upon my reader’s patience.

Blaine, in his Encyclopædia of Rural Sports published in 1840, says when speaking of the Cow-dung fly:—“By some extraordinary mistake Bowlker describes this fly as having upright wings; and as many of the London fly-makers dress their flies by his directions, we need not wonder that they are often bought with their wings unnaturally glaring outwards.”

What I have tried to do, is to work out and bring down to a definite rule the position in which the wings of the imitations of the various kinds of flies should be placed.

My reader therefore must not hope in this first part to meet with many imitations of creatures that have not been imitated before; but if he finds that the manner in which the flies are dealt with as a whole is any step forward, be it ever so small, I shall be satisfied in having attained the object at which I aim.

My reader may be surprised at the order in which I have arranged the various flies; but it was necessary, or at any rate very much more convenient, to arrange them in the way I have, as entomological accuracy of arrangement in a work on fishing must not be the first consideration of the author. That the wings of the Alder and the Caddis flies are in practically the same position in relation to their bodies, was my reason for placing the descriptions of these flies next each other, and this instance is sufficient to suggest to those of my readers who are entomologists, reasons for the other cases in which I have not placed the descriptions of the various flies in their correct sequence.

A disclaimer must also be my preface to the second part of my work, for I know that I am far from being the first in thinking that the wet fly of the fisherman is not taken by the fish for the natural fly it is supposed to represent.

Here my hope is that my reader will find a definite theory which is sufficiently plausible to interest him, at least for the moment.

I have to acknowledge the kind assistance of Dr. G. A. Buckmaster, Lecturer on Physiology at St. George’s Hospital, of Mr. Ernest E. Austen, of the British Museum (Natural History), and of several other gentlemen.

I must also thank the Editor of Land and Water for allowing me to republish an article in the first part of my book, and the Editor of The Field for a similar permission with regard to certain articles which appear in the second part.

Mrs. J. R. Richardson, of Kingston-on-Thames, has also given me some hints as to improvements in the dressing of some of the flies described.

Charles Walker.


CONTENTS

PART I
 
DRY FLIES
 
CHAPTER I
 PAGE
Introductory3
CHAPTER II
Colour Perception in Fish14
CHAPTER III
How to Dress Flies with the Wings in the Natural Position29
CHAPTER IV
The Alder-fly41
CHAPTER V
Caddis-flies45
CHAPTER VI
Perlidæ54
CHAPTER VII
Diptera58
CHAPTER VIII
Winged Ants73
CHAPTER IX
Caterpillars76
 
PART II
 
WET FLIES
 
CHAPTER I
A Theory87
CHAPTER II
Corixæ96
CHAPTER III
Fresh-water Shrimp107
Larvæ of Water-Insects113
Some Hints on Dry Fly-Fishing115

OLD FLIES IN NEW DRESSES


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