UV characteristics of fish food

tackleman

Active Member
With our growing interest in UV tying materials - thinking of materials NOT resins - is anyone aware of research into UV coloration in insects, baitfish, etc.? Is there a photo of a throat sample illuminated with a UV light that would highlight any parts that were particularly reflective in the UV part of the light spectrum? Thanks!
 

SilverFly

Active Member
With our growing interest in UV tying materials - thinking of materials NOT resins - is anyone aware of research into UV coloration in insects, baitfish, etc.? Is there a photo of a throat sample illuminated with a UV light that would highlight any parts that were particularly reflective in the UV part of the light spectrum? Thanks!
There was a thread on this a year or two back that got seriously deep into the subject, and included posts by someone who actually was an authority on the topic (don't think he's on here anymore).

The bottom line is this would be difficult to determine at best. Basically you'd have to get a spectrometer, illuminate the subject in full sunlight, then analyze the relative intensities of the reflected wavelengths in comparison to the materials in question.

Unfortunately, even if we were able to exactly match the visible and UV spectra of a fly to the real bug/baitfish being imitated, we still would have know way of know what it actually looks like to a fish, since we can't see in UV. Kinda like trying to explain "blue" to someone who has been completely colorblind since birth.
 

tackleman

Active Member
There was a thread on this a year or two back that got seriously deep into the subject, and included posts by someone who actually was an authority on the topic (don't think he's on here anymore).

The bottom line is this would be difficult to determine at best. Basically you'd have to get a spectrometer, illuminate the subject in full sunlight, then analyze the relative intensities of the reflected wavelengths in comparison to the materials in question.

Unfortunately, even if we were able to exactly match the visible and UV spectra of a fly to the real bug/baitfish being imitated, we still would have know way of know what it actually looks like to a fish, since we can't see in UV. Kinda like trying to explain "blue" to someone who has been completely colorblind since birth.

Thanks SF! I agree with the difficulty of producing a good scientific answer to this question.
In a book on fish vision a few years back, analysis of a fish's eye indicated receptors for different wave lengths of light which was used to postulate what a fish sees. By analyzing reflected light from some fish food and running information through what a fish is able to see, we might have a better idea of what an object looks like to a fish. I'm also quite sure that contrast to surroundings is important.

My enquiring mind also wonders about sound and smell - but that can be for another day!
 

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