January Fly Salon- Marabunta

Discussion in 'Fly Tying' started by riseform, Jan 4, 2014.

  1. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
    Ok, for those of you not familiar with 1954's "The Naked Jungle" we are talking ants here.

    Thirty years of fly fishing and I can honestly say I don't have a "go to" ant pattern. Kind of frustrating, since aside from a beetle, they are probably the most effective terrestrial and are present a good 9 months out of the year. Placed behind a hopper, Craig Mathews claims you'll get four to five fish on the ant for every one on the hopper. Anyone who has stumbled upon a swarm of flying ants on the water knows how important it is to have a good pattern.

    My main issue with ants is they are hard to see. When I try to improve visibility on a pattern, it stops resembling an ant. I suppose a visible wing may be the best solution. I primarily use ants as a second fly behind something more visible. When I come to a swirling pool of foam with trout heads popping up, my first thought is an ant, but I always go with a more visible beetle.

    Any time there are a gazillion options, it usually means there isn't a perfect solution. I've tied ants consisting of two balls of fuzz with a hackle, deer hair bodies, foam, CDC, etc. There are chernobyl ants, Amy's ant, Ant Acid and a plethora of known ant patterns out there. In my quest for the perfect ant pattern, I'd like to see what you've come up with as your go to pattern. I'll be interested in seeing what you use for bodies, legs, wings, posts, etc.

    Be warned that this is an ant thread:

    "Liking" anyone's post or fly puts you at risk of being called a sycophant.
    Including ant balls as a hotspot probably makes you a deviant.
    Remember, ants are gender confused creatures because even their uncles are ants.
    And when a young couple decides to run off to Vegas....antelope.

    Sorry, enough of this banter. Show me your ants!
    [IMG]
    plaegreid, FinLuver and McNasty like this.
  2. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
    Hmmm, after the anemic response to last month's BWO Fly Salon, I thought simple ant patterns would be a no brainer to get a variety of patterns.

    Recognizing the "Fly Salon" is in need of CPR, I will inject one last bit of life here before letting it fade into the WFF graveyard (dead ant, dead ant....)

    CDC RED ANT: Dubbed orange antron wrapped with orange CDC ala Hans CDC & Elk body, wing of Gadwall feather loop with McFlyon teased on either side of the loop, black antron dubbing overwrapped with black CDC in split thread.
    [IMG]
  3. McNasty Canyon Lurker

    Posts: 1,041
    Somewhere Near Selah, WA
    Ratings: +412 / 1
    dont worry, it shall live. ill be takin some pics of some other flies for other purposes later and will post a few of the couple ants i have.
  4. Jack Devlin Active Member

    Posts: 1,202
    Western Washington, Puget Sound area
    Ratings: +961 / 1
    Riseform,
    I'm thinking that the holidays may have played a part in last months Salon interest.?????
    I anticipate more interest in the January Salon.
    I haven't tied an ant in years but will see if I can come up with one for this Salon.
    Jack
  5. constructeur Active Member

    Posts: 1,515
    Seattle, Wa
    Ratings: +410 / 0
    Any time the Salon get's too detailed/specific, it gets 'thin' in regards to responses. I think a generic 'terrestrials' challenge would have gone over a bit better. Just my $.02

    It's hard to find a topic that everyone can groove on here, some guys fish all, some just salt, anadramous, still waters, or trout...
    I'm keen to participate, but don't really angle for trout, and definitely don't tie for them...yet :).
  6. plaegreid Saved by the buoyancy of citrus

    Posts: 559
    Renton, WA
    Ratings: +638 / 0
    Much like in high school/college, I like to wait until the last minute to turn in my work. There's still a fair bit of January left for me to procrastinate! Also, neat fly, I'd fish that.
    FinLuver likes this.
  7. Jack Devlin Active Member

    Posts: 1,202
    Western Washington, Puget Sound area
    Ratings: +961 / 1
  8. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
  9. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
    Interesting stuff, basla wood. What better place than an ant Salon to learn some interesting facts about tying materials?

    FinLuver likes this.
  10. Jack Devlin Active Member

    Posts: 1,202
    Western Washington, Puget Sound area
    Ratings: +961 / 1
    That was "way back when" before so many foam fly tying products were available. Balsa was what we had around. Easy to work with and light.
    Jack
  11. jwg Active Member

    Posts: 538
    West Richland, WA
    Ratings: +106 / 0
    Does it have to be a floating ant or are sinking ants OK?

    Of course your c,ant see a sinking ant either but you can put them on a dropper

    J
  12. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
    Sinking would be fine, they work better drowned anyway. I'll take anything the way this Salon is going. I was about to post a picture of my aunt Marilyn.

    Here's some interesting observations and Ralph Cutter's approach to ants:
    http://www.flyline.com/entomology/ants/
  13. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
    A Cutteresque pattern, variation of "the perfect ant":

    Antron body, over wrapped in orange CDC in split thread (to provide even more trapped bubbles), Orange deer hair top and post to aid visibility, grizzly saddle.
    [IMG]
  14. constructeur Active Member

    Posts: 1,515
    Seattle, Wa
    Ratings: +410 / 0
    That's hoTTT Riseform. What size do you tie those puppies?
  15. McNasty Canyon Lurker

    Posts: 1,041
    Somewhere Near Selah, WA
    Ratings: +412 / 1
    dang rise, i think you just won your own theme!
    constructeur likes this.
  16. FinLuver Active Member

    Posts: 426
    Mid-Willamette Valley
    Ratings: +97 / 0
    "FinLuver's Likeable"...

    Ant 3.jpg Ant 2.jpg


    Wet or dry...fish drool all over these!!
    plaegreid likes this.
  17. riseform Active Member

    Posts: 1,096
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +286 / 0
    Fin, those are awesome, simply can't be beat.

    I think I put that on a size 14. According to Cutter's write up, however, size doesn't matter ;) since ants present themselves in all sorts or contorted forms. He does claim that most people fish an ant that is too small.
  18. FinLuver Active Member

    Posts: 426
    Mid-Willamette Valley
    Ratings: +97 / 0
    Thanks riseform!!

    Those are tied on a Dai-Riki #300, sz. 12...(we have BIG ants in the area).

    They are not very durable, but after 15 fish...I can't complain...

    Mess.jpg

    EVEN THIS "MESS" WAS CATCHING FISH!!
    Jack Devlin likes this.
  19. Jack Devlin Active Member

    Posts: 1,202
    Western Washington, Puget Sound area
    Ratings: +961 / 1
    That could almost serve as a hopper pattern.?
    Jack
    FinLuver likes this.
  20. Jack Devlin Active Member

    Posts: 1,202
    Western Washington, Puget Sound area
    Ratings: +961 / 1
    The SILVER ANT.
    plaegreid likes this.