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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ran across a blurb about lures that incorporate UV reflective material the other day, and noticed there's a fair amount of UV reflective tying material out there.

Anyone give UV-reflective flies a shot? I'd be curious to get some real-world feedback.

Many thanks.
 

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I hope she likes whitefish
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I'm curious as well. I've seen gear guys use UV paint on their jigs, spoons, baits, plugs, etc for salmon and always kind of chuckled to myself, but what do I know, I guess anything is possible.
 

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Well, I have seen a lot of gadgets to catch fishers rather than fish over the years.
They talk a good story about the fish seeing the glow in the water, but I really wonder how much light gets to the fly at say fifteen feet down. The cost of such things is not prohibitive
so if it turns your crank, go for it. I can't see any harm in it and hey, if you bring a big trout to net, all the better.

I personally believe that the fish is well adapted to finding food without the aid of neon lights.
Presentation and choice of fly seem to be more important to me, but that is just me. Your milage may vary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah - won't hurt to try. Ordered some materials and will chuck a few at the salmon this fall and report back if it seems to make any difference.
 

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IMO its not BS. Water absorbs different lightwaves (colors) at different rates. Red is one of the first and UV and green one of the last. Trout can see UV although not well. I don't see how if you prescribe to fishing bright colors on bright days and dark colors on dark days, how you can dismiss UV. While I don't think it makes much difference in the top of the water column, I do think the deeper you go the more of a player UV becomes.
 

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Confidence in you fishing method and gear is more important than anything else. Just my opinion.
But how would you measure such a thing. Fish are pretty unpredictable as to when they will and will not play the game. If you have a great day on the water, was it because of the fly you chose or how you presented it or was it because the fish chose it.

If you believe it will help, it most likely will, under certain circumstances.
At other times, maybe not so much.

In my book, the most important thing in the equation is to enjoy the time on the water.
 

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In spite of the overwhelming reek of marketing hype, many species of fish are capable of seeing in the UV spectrum (UV light can penetrate water to surprising depths.) Not sure if this is true for salmonids, but considering the range of environments and conditions they are exposed to, I'd be surprised if they didn't have the capability.

If they do see in UV, then it stands to reason using the UV materials would have some effect. If it does, the only sucky part is you won't know what your flies look like to the fish.
 

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Your last statement is a point well made Silverfly.
How we perceive things and how a fish perceives things may be quite different.
I am of the opinion that a fish will take a fly for 1 of three reasons:
1. Hunger and it looks like dinner.
2. Territorial instinct
3. Curiosity

But then that is what makes fly fishing so fascinating. Putting all the parts of the puzzle together and fooling a monster of the deep into taking your offering.
 

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isnt this all relative to depth? in fly fishing, there are really only a handful of situations where you are actually fishing any REAL depth. i can see UV being important with things like downrigger trolling for kings where you often fish in excess of 100-120'. but stripping flies for coho in the salt i doubt my fly has ever been deeper than 3 feet at any point. does UV matter at 3 feet deep? what about running a UV glow bug with that new steelhead stalker UV yarn through a 5' slot on the hoh? does that matter?

i don't think so. i'd be interested to KNOW if it offers added visibility to steelhead in low visibility situations like high, mucked up glacial water. otherwise its a gimmick to me.
 

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I admit to knowing nothing about UV material, what it is or where you get it. But I am curious. I was on Blue Lake in May fishing for Lahontans on a dark gloomy day. One gentleman and his wife were kicking the crap out of all of us. I talked to him as he left and he said they were fishing UV flies down deep on Type VI or VII lines with almost the entire fly line out and going dead slow. They had to be fishing pretty deep with those lines and going that slow.

So what is this stuff and where do you get it? It is certainly worth a shot, especially in low light conditions it would appear. Remember, bead heads were regarded as kind of a gimmick when they first came along. We all know how that turned out.

Ive
 

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Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater....Know Grizzler
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I use UV materials in all my Puget Sound saltwater patterns.
I believe in it and have confidence when I fish it.

I'll be tying some steelhead flies for this winter using some of this UV yarn.
!
 

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I just thought I would shed a little light on the subject of UV and fish. A little reading on the subject of UV from a very informed Biologist.

"There is overwhelming evidence that all spiecies of salmonids see and use UV at ALL stages of thier life cycle, that is to say before, during, and after smoltification.

UV Research

And in multiple spiecies of salmon :
Multiple Species UV

These articles not only show that UV is a life long sight process, that it is intended for finding food...oops forgot that link (SpringerLink ) and that it intensifies as they reach maturity starting when they move into less than 40 ft of water. It is an effective way to catch multiple spiecies of fish".

I believe the UV enhancement can help you catch more fish in a wide variety of conditions but there is a lot more to this yarn than just the UV. The part of our yarn that most people like is how soft it is (same micron count as cashmere!) and how easy it is to use for glo bugs and as a dubbing. The colors will never bleed or leach and the UV will never fade or bleed. The colors resist fading better than other store bought yarns. If can also be blended with multiple colors to create unique glo-bugs. It is also made from a blend of natural fibers. If anyone has any questions about the yarn just let me know.



Another few images from a glo-bug I just made up with this new Peach and some Shrimp Pink. You can see in the second pic how the yarn covers the hook shank on the bottom, not an easy thing to achieve with other yarns. ;)





Good luck this winter! :thumb:
 

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Sculpin Enterprises
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In fact, the pdf from the Journal of Experimental Biology counters the likelihood that adult, non-sexually mature salmonids use UV to detect prey in significant amounts. First, the study demonstrated that upon smoltification, either natural or induced, the number of UV sensitive cones in the ventral part of the eye is tremendously reduced, and that the dorsal part of the retina retained greater UV sensitivity. Light impacting the ventral part of the retina is coming from above the fish while light reaching the dorsal part of the retina is coming from below the fish. Where do you think most salmon are relative to their bait-fish prey? It does appear that UV sensitivity to the ventral and dorsal sections of the retina is reestablished in sexually-mature fish (although whether that occurs at sea during the return migration or in the rivers is unclear).

In clear water, such as you would find in the open ocean, blue light penetrates the farthest (see http://disc.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/oceancolor/additional/science-focus/ocean-color/oceanblue.shtml), much farther than UV. The authors speculate that the loss / reduction in UV sensitive cones may be a response to foraging at greater depths in the open ocean after smoltification. I did not see any research referenced in the study that demonstrated that UV is used for foraging. It would be fascinating to conduct a study in which a UV-colored lure was paired with an identical blue-colored lure to see which is preferred, especially under different light and visual background environments. For example, the UV lure might be preferred because it is in fact more visible than blue, although the relative extinction coefficients of blue light vs. UV would make this unlikely. Or the UV lure might be preferred because in the absence of UV light, it would appear black (no UV light means no UV light to reflect back to the fish) and the fish selected the UV lure because of the contrast between the apparently black lure and the lighter background.

In any event, the recent marketing of UV lures / materials as increasing strike rates is interesting because we, through our visual systems, cannot detect a difference and because of the huge variance in strike rates so much of lure choice and success is based on confidence, not empirical evidence. Caveat emptor.

Steve
 

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Sculpin Enterprises
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Thinking about this a little bit more, I am REALLY curious as to the reflectance of salmon eggs in UV. When you view online videos of steelhead (or Atlantic salmon) striking lures / flies in a river, they seem to come off the bottom and are attacking objects above eye level. In this situation, the light reflecting off the lure / fly would be impacting the ventral section of the retina, that section with the fewer UV cones. But, if they were striking clusters of eggs (a strong strike inducer for all salmonids it seems), those would most likely be along the bottom, in relatively shallow water (= lots of available UV still) and the light would reflect through the cornea and lens to the dorsal section of the retina, the relatively UV cone rich section.

Hmmm, Steve
 
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