Have you ever heard of Perdigon style flies? It’s relatively new to me. Sure I’ve heard of them, but since I fish with dry flies whenever I can, I didn’t really pay attention to them.
At a recent Central Oregon Flyfisher’s Winter Fly Tying class, Bill Seitz (I call him Crooked River Bill”) taught a class on a few Perdigon variations he has been quite successful with. He called them a Pheasant Tail Perdigon, Root Beer Float Perdigon, Barber Pole Perdigon, and Midge Perdigon.
With a little bit of research, I found that Perdigon style flies were developed by the Spanish and used in the World Fly Fishing Championships. The word “perdigon” is translated from Spanish to English as “pellet”.
The theory is to develop flies tied with a bead head, body of thread or tinsel, and tail using Coq de Leon. Lastly, black fingernail polish (or a black sharpie on smaller nymphs) is applied to the bead and down the thorax area. The fly is covered with UV resin or head cement to create a slim bodied fly that sinks like a rock…or pellet. Many Perdigon flies use tungsten beads to speed the fly’s descent.
Here is a Pliva Perdigon (names for the Pliva River in Bosnia). I found it on the Tactical Fly Fisher website in a blog post by Devin Olsen, who has been a member of the 2017 Fly Fishing Teams USA at the World Fly Fishing Championship. It was Devon’s 9th consecutive year in that role.
Of course, you can substitute any material you choose and call it your own “variant”. That seems to be what us fly tyers do!
Notice there are no materials like dubbing or hackle in these Perdigon style flies. These materials are not used because they slow the descent of this nymph to the river bottom where the trout are eating nymphs.
Bill Seitz believes in man-made materials with UV and/or fluorescent colors. After the class, I tied 1/2 dozen of each fly and decided to use my UV Solarez lamp to see what happened. Here is a short video I took so you can see the real meaning of the word “hot spot”.
These are easy flies to tie, so go down to your local fly shop and purchase a few fluorescent thread colors.
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