Trout Fishing and Moustique Flies

One type of insect used in trout fishing is the moustique fly, which comes from the Jura region of Switzerland, bordering France. Moustique flies have been used by fishermen for over one hundred years. Their most interesting feature is the hackle. As with all artificial flies, a wide range of raw materials are used to imitate insects and other lifeforms. In the case of the moustique fly a particularly interesting and attention-grabbing feature is its hackle. And one source of imitation hackle is from ducks. Some of the moustique fly patterns use a particular delicate grey duck feather in their construction. The feather is located near the preen gland. This feather, as one might expect because of the oily coating the duck uses for waterproofing itself, provides excellent floatation. Another type of moustique fly uses a duck’s gland feathers, but in a slightly different way.

The flies used are numerous. Among them is the small, pale-coloured ephemerid. It is closely equivalent to the British species, the pale water (baetis bioculatus) or perhaps the small spurwing (centroptilum luteolum). Others include the Swiss sedge or caddis flies. One pattern created by Italian Marjan Fratnik, who was well acquainted with moustique flies. He thought some moustique patterns to be a little fragile so developed his “F” fly, using the duck’s preen gland feathers, which has been used across Europe for both trout and grayling.

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