Palmered Red Spinner
  |  First Published: December 2009

Spinners are the second stage of the adult mayfly’s life cycle.

This occurs after the dun has hatched and goes through a second moult to turn into the more colourful stage of the mayfly.

The spinner’s sole purpose is for the procreation of the mayfly species; once the moult has taken place the males take to the wing in dense clouds, hovering above the water’s surface, rising and falling as if riding the air currents.

The females fly into these clouds of males and once a suitable selection has been made, the male and female mate on the wing and as quickly as it began, it ends with the males drifting away and falling to ground like broken kites.

The females continue on for a short while as they develop their eggs and then descend to the water’s surface, dipping their tails through the surface film to lay the eggs and begin another life cycle.

This fly pattern is tied to imitate the female spinner in the act of laying eggs, as the spinners themselves are rarely close to the surface at any other stage of their short life.

Late afternoons and evenings are the best times to experience spinner falls. Fish will leap clear of the water trying to take the mating adults on the wing – a very frustrating time indeed.

Once the egg laying is complete, the female will fall to the surface and become what is often referred to as a spent spinner. The dead spinner lies on the water with her transparent wings flat on the surface.

This pattern can be further modified to represent the spent spinner by clipping the hackle flat on top and bottom so the fly lies in the surface film.

Best times to fish the spent spinner are in the mornings after a big spinner fall the evening before. The dead insects accumulate in backwaters and side eddies where trout cruise and mop them up at will.

Finding spinners is never a difficult thing when wandering streamside.

Look upstream into the afternoon sun and see millions of iridescent little specks rising and falling in the afternoon air next to bushes and under other streamside vegetation. You will be witnessing the oft talked-about dance of the mayfly.



HOOK:MUSTAD R50 # 12-16
THREAD:Tan 6/-
BODY:Tan thread
TAIL:Ginger micro fibbets
HEAD:Tan thread
RIB:Fine copper wire
PALMER:Brown hackle

Reads: 1633

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