The Fly's Up!

Mayflies by Jackie Mahon for Trout and Salmon Magazine's May 2019 issue

In 2019 I was asked to contribute Irish Mayfly patterns for "The Fly's Up!" article in the May 2019 edition of Trout and Salmon magazine.

The article reviewed the "feast for the eyes" on 24 modern mayfly patterns tied by some of Ireland's finest lough anglers.

My patterns covered the Detached Body Mayfly, the West of Ireland Octopus, the UV Picric Gosling and the Lough Arrow Mayfly.

The Detached Body Mayfly has served me well for the past few seasons, especially on the Western loughs. I usually fish it with another dry Mayfly or a dry Wulff. It has accounted for many Trout, particularly on Arrow, where I usually spend the month of May guiding and fishing.

- Hook: Size 10 - 12 Ahrex Superdry (FW 525).
- Thread: Olive Semperfli Nano Silk.
- Tail: Moose mane hair.
- Body: Vinyl.
- Wing: Four natural CDC feathers.
- Hackle: Two CDC feathers (one Yellow, one Olive).

The West of Ireland Octopus is a pattern designed by Stan Headley for Lough Melvin in 1991. Most Irish anglers have a range of Octopuses in their fly-boxes, including sooty, claret and UV. This fly is usually a top-dropper or a point-fly on a three or four flour fly cast. When I'm guiding on Arrow or Melvin, I always make sure my clients try an Octopus at some point in the day.

- Hook: Size 10 - 12 Ahrex Wet (FW 580).
- Thread: Textreme fluoro hot orange.
- Tag: Old Irish flat tinsel.
- Tail: Glo-Brite floss no. 11
- Rib: Yellow UTC wire.
- Body: Picric Seal's fur mixed with yellow SLF dubbing.
- Body hackle: Picric-Yellow cock.
- Head hackles: West of Ireland golden olive (WOIGO) dyed Pheasant rump, with WOIGO Partridge hackle over.
- Hackle: Two CDC feathers (one Yellow, one Olive).

The UV Picric Gosling came from Lough Melvin and Lough Erne. It is very popular, especially from May onwards. There are many variations; Yellow and Grey are the most popular. I came up with this pattern a few years ago while guiding on Lough Melvin. On a bright day it fishes well in the deeps and has accounted for many Sonaghan and Gillaroo. One to try when the fly are hatching.

- Hook: Size 10 - 12 Ahrex Wet (FW 580).
- Thread: Textreme fluoro hot orange.
- Tail: Bronze Mallard.
- Rib: Flybox orange wire.
- Body: Flybox orange Crystal hackle.
- Body hackle: Hot orange cock.
- Head hackles: Picric cock with picric-dyed grey Mallard flank over.

The Lough Arrow Wulff evolved from an original pattern devised by the great American angler Lee Wulff. Many Irish anglers have added their own colours and tweaked the design. This one was conceived during a phone call with the great fly-tyer Tony O'Sullian from Cork. It has worked exceptionally well on Arrow in an early morning hatch when most of the Mayflies are coming out a dark shade of green.

- Hook: Size 10 - 12 Ahrex DryFly (FW 500).
- Thread: Yellow Semperfli Nano Silk.
- Tail: Picric-dyed grey Squirrel.
- Body: Picric-dyed Mole fur.
- Hackle: Olive grizzle cock.
- Wing: Picric-dyed grey Squirrel.

See you in 2023

For guided fishing please use my contact page to get in touch. Now taking bookings for the 2024 season.

Tight lines,

Jackie Mahon

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