Flies that imitate natural insects catch fish, it's that simple. J: son Match’n’Catch makes your choice easy and makes your fly fishing more fun and successful.
The concept J:son Match’n’Catch is designed with a simple purpose - matching the right fly with whatever the fish eats and thereby increasing your chance of catching it. An important part of this is J:son flies - they are the key to success. Isn't it a little strange, nevertheless, that so many fly fishermen put thousands on fly fishing rods, reels and fly lines, but overlook the single most important detail - the fly? To succeed, we must have some basic knowledge of the fish's food, what it eats and when. A hatch always begins at the bottom and we must be able to imitate all stages of a specific insect during a hatch. The nymph or the larva, the pupa, the emerger and finally the adult winged insect (dun). All these stages are part of a hatching. Match this life cycle with the right imitations in your fly box and significantly increase your chances.
Please allow us to present to you a few important critters for us fly fishers.
Mayflies have a so-called incomplete transformation - Hemimetabolic transformation. This means that they go from the stage of being an egg to a larva before hatching into a winged insect in the water surface. The larval stage of mayfly is often called a nymph among fly fishermen. Mayflies always lay their eggs in water and the larval stage is spent in the same environment until it transforms into a winged insect. In Sweden there are approx: 60 species of mayflies and they are in all stages an important food for a number of fish species. For a fly fisherman, these are therefore of great importance. However, we do not need to be able to imitate all these species exactly. Many are similar to each other and the fish cannot distinguish them all.
After the mayflies have laid their eggs, they die and generally end up on the surface of the water. The insect then has its wings pointed straight out from each side of the body. As a fly fisherman, these dead mayflies are imitated with flies called spent spinners. The mayfly hatch most frequently at the beginning of summer, but hatches occur from spring to autumn. The transformation from larva to winged insect takes place during the day, but egg-laying generally occurs at dusk. Therefore, it is of great importance that you have flies that imitate all the important stages of the mayfly - larva (nymph) – emerger (imitates a nymph that hatches into a winged insect) –winged mayfly –spent spinner (dead mayfly).
Mayflies are one of the more important components of many fish's diet. For the fly fishers, they are like the puck in a hockey game - no puck, no game. Few insects can hatch in such abundant quantities and induce such selectivity in fish species as, for example, trout. This is not just about the fish targeting mayflies, but they often become selective at just one stage in the hatching process. Hence, it is of the utmost importance that we as fly fishermen can imitate all stages of the mayfly. The larva (nymph), the emerger, the winged insect and finally the spent spinner. Here it is also important to match size and color correctly. And as always, a good imitation, a fly that closely resembles the mayfly that hatch, will greatly increase your chances. Hey, it's a bit like walking into a bike shop looking for a racer, but walking out with a mountain bike. You simply don't, a mountain bike can never imitate than a racer.
Real Mayfly Nymph - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Real Mayfly Emerger - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Real Mayfly Dun (winged insect) - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Real Spent Mayfly - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
The Caddis have a so-called Holometabol development, a complete transformation. They go from egg to larva before becoming a pupa and finally hatching into a winged and fully grown insect. In Sweden, there are an estimated 220 species distributed among 19 families. The vast majority of caddis are very similar to each other, as opposed to, for example, mayflies. This means that we as fly fishermen and fly tyers do not need knowledge of each species or even its family. Instead, it's about tying or buying imitations that work well and imitate the caddis as well as possible, but focus on a few colors and sizes. Therefore, the category of caddis flies will not be as accurate as for mayflies but will instead revolve around the different families that exist. The vast majority of winged caddis range in color from light brown to black and can be either solid or spotted.
Caddis are the most important food for many fish species and are abundantly spread all over Sweden. The advantage is that it does not require a lot of specific imitations, but a couple of different colors and sizes of larvae, pupae, emergers and winged caddis will do. A well-thought-out selection is a smart move that will improve the conditions at the fishing water and definitely increase your chances of good fishing, we know that at J:Son.
Caddis hatch either freely in the water surface or by the pupa climbing onto stones or vegetation in the water or next to the shore. They are found in both flowing and still water. Egg-laying often takes place by the female bouncing forward on the surface of the water at high speed and then spreading her eggs. In this process, they mostly resemble small racing boats and you can advantageously fish your imitation at a fairly high speed on the surface of the water. At the same time, there are some species of caddis that lay their eggs by diving down or climbing down via, for example, reeds or stones, to lay their eggs on the bottom. In the larval stage, it is common for them to build a shelter around their body of gravel or plant material, these are usually called “cased caddis”. Some larvae instead dig deep into the bottom where they hide, and finally there are those that cling to, for example, a rock and spin a net that resembles a miniature trawl in which the food is caught. These nets are made of silk and a couple of species of caddis instead uses this silk to build its house around its body and then attaches itself to a stone.
The larvae should be fished close to the bottom, preferably on the bottom. The pupae are found throughout the water mass as they only emerge before the hatching stage. A smart move during hatching is to fish either a winged caddis imitation and a pupa or emerger at the same time, alternatively emerger and pupa. This is done most easily by attaching a short piece of tippet material, approximately 20-40 cm, to the hook bend of the fly that sits at the end of the leader from the fly line. Use a regular bait knot to attach the tippet in the hook bend. Then attach the second fly to the end of that tippet. Using an imitation of a winged caddis that is fished dry on the surface as the main fly and a pupa as the anchor fly, the dry fly simultaneously functions as a indicator, a sort of float in short.
Real Caddis Larva - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Real Caddis Pupa - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Real Caddis Adult - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Midges are one of the largest families within the order diptera, Diptera, to which among other things also hornbills belong. They have a complete transformation, holometabol, where they go from egg to larva, pupa and finally adult winged insect, called imago. What separates the midges from the stinging mosquitoes, which we generally do not immediately love, is that they lack a suction proboscis with which they can be stung. Midges form one of the most important links in the food chain for many aquatic insects and animals, not least fish. In addition, they are one of nature's true survivors. There are species that live in fresh water, others in brackish water and a couple that thrive in salt water. Some handle drought excellently, others freeze in extreme cold and several cope with acidified or alkaline watercourses. In Sweden, 500 species of midges have been found and their occurrence is enormously abundant. The larvae have hemoglobin in their blood and are therefore able to live in extremely low-oxygen environments. This also means that the larvae of many species are red in colour.
Small and uninteresting says the inexperienced, small and highly interesting says the experienced. Because that's how it is, the size is not interesting for the fish, it's the availability, the amount of a certain insect species that decides. And when it comes to midges, the amount is often noticeable. Overlooking these very small insects, or other similar small insects, is a big mistake. Because in all waterways they occur, from cold jocks in the north, to salt-sprinkled cobbles on the west coast. And wherever they are, the fish will eat them and in abundance. Midges imitations also work excellently for imitating basically all small insects that live in or around water. They are simply too small for the fish to distinguish the smallest detail. But don't be fooled, a duster won't do the job, nor will an imitation too thick, too big or too long. That's how much the fish can distinguish, not least when they become selective. Correct imitation is crucial even for the smallest of insects.
Real Midge - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Stoneflies mainly live in flowing water. But they can also occur in still water in places with good flow. They generally require very good oxygenation and belong to one of the oldest insects on earth. Hatching usually takes place close to the beach and the winged and adult stonefly like to stay among vegetation and rocks in the beach zone.
In Sweden, 7 families, a total of 39 species, of stoneflies have been found. They have a so-called hemimetabolic development, also called incomplete transformation. This means they go from egg, directly to larva (often called a nymph among fly fishermen) and then hatch into an adult, winged insect called an imago. In the larval stage, they somewhat resemble the larvae of the mayfly, but differ somewhat in that, among other things, they lack long tail spines, but instead have two, shorter and coarser, spines placed on each side of the back of the body. The wings of the adult stonefly are transparent and are positioned directly above the body when they are at rest.
Some species of stoneflies use sound when mating. The female and the male find each other by making a kind of drumming sound with their hind bodies. This is generally called "substratum music" and it is possible to identify a certain species by this sound, as the species that use this technique have different sounds.
Stoneflies require good water quality to thrive. Stooneflies are often overlooked by fly fishermen in Sweden. Not so strange really, because it rarely forms an important part of the fish's diet. The only real time when fishing with dry flies imitating the adult stonefly is when the females lay their eggs. Here, instead, the larval stage is more interesting as these are easier for the fish to find and take. Stoneflies rarely hatch in large numbers, but belong to the species that usually hatch earliest in the season. It is not unusual to see larvae climbing up along the ice to hatch on an early spring day when the sun comes out.
In many other countries, for example the northwestern parts of the USA, they have a greater importance as the number of species is more and some of these are very large in size and hatch abundantly. However, here, in the cold north, it looks different. However, they should not be completely overlooked. Sometimes it happens that the hatches increase and the fishing picks up, but even under such conditions it is primarily imitations of the larva that are interesting to fish with. Among the families and species of stoneflies we have in Sweden, it is really only the size and color that distinguish them. And this may ultimately be limited to two colors and a few sizes. Among fly fishermen, they talk about yellow or black Stoneflies, at least if we stick to the species that are ultimately of interest.
Real Stonefly Nymph - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
Real Stonefly Adult - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
There are a variety of freshwater and saltwater forms of scuds. Identifying the different families and species is not always so easy. In addition, some of the different families are mentioned by that name in one part of the world and something else in another part. What they have in common, however, is that they are all incredibly similar to each other and this makes it redundant for fly fishermen to distinguish them, an imitation of one family or species works perfectly for several of the other families and species. What they all have in common is that they are relatively small in size and in many bodies of water, mainly lakes and still-flowing parts of streams, rivers and along the coast, a very important part of the fish's food.
Studies show that 80-95% of the fish's food is taken below the water surface, not just below, in or on the surface. All these families are very old and have existed on our earth far longer than mankind. They have always been an important food for aquatic animals for millions of years and thrive best in clean bodies of water. You rarely find any of these in, for example, humus-rich and slightly acidified to acidified forest lakes. Crouch to form when at rest to quickly straighten the body when moving in something that can be compared to a jump.
Whether you fish in lakes, streams, rivers, streams or along the coast in search of sea trout, there is a very good chance that the fish you are looking for will take these small crustaceans at some point each day. Imitations of these in your box are as basic as not forgetting the fly reel at home when you go fishing. In terms of color, they come in everything from white, gray and pink, to olive brown. The most common, however, is that they range in color from light olive to just olive brown. When you fish the imitations, please do so with short, jerky movements, as if the fly is jumping forward through the water. A short, quick pull on the fly line of a decimeter or two, so that the fly moves nimbly forward and upwards. Then let it fall for a second or two towards the bottom again, before making another move. This technique also works well in calmer sections of flowing water, for example ponds or slow pools and seals.
Real Scuds - CHECK OUT THE J:SON IMITATION
A number of land insects are included in the food of many fish. These tend to be of greater interest when the hatching of insects in the water has subsided, especially late in the season. During this period, when it starts to get cold in the air and the mornings often begin with frost, many terrestrial insects become stubborn in their behavior. They fly poorly, move slowly, they simply seem tired and frozen. Many of them end up on the surface of the water and cannot possibly get out of there. Then they become easy prey for the fish.
Imitations of some land insects are periodically and locally very important in the fly box. Not infrequently, the fish tend to become selective on some of these. One such example is ants during late summer and autumn, which can end up in the water in very large quantities, not least when flying ants. Such occasions can be likened to abundant mayfly hatchings and if you are unprepared, the payoff will be accordingly. Most of these land insects are fished as dry flies on or in the surface. Many times these insects are clumsy and not at all made to end up on water. Their bodies then often sink deep into the surface film and the fish can calmly and quietly take care of themselves. This is often seen in the fact that the vigils are very slow and calm in their rhythm.