Under the most favorable conditions, the bottom beds of lakes and streams, where game-fish are at all plentiful, are not crowded with creepers. In the battle of life aquatic creatures are instinctively wary: they hide under stones, among weeds, or burrow out of sight under sand or mud to avoid being seen by the sharp eyes of trout, that soon discover and devour them. From the stomach of one large brook-trout caught in the Willowemoc I have taken seven of these hellgrammites from half an inch to one inch and three-quarters in length. To be successful in fishing the artificial, like the caddis, it should be attached to the end of the leader, cast out as a fly to deep water and allowed to sink to the bottom, where it must be continually moved from place to place. This little hellgrammite is more common as food for brook-trout, and the artificial is very attractive to them. I have taken several fine trout on it, when they have run up from deep water before the creeper got near the bottom. It cannot fail to attract bass, though tied on hooks much too small for that fish; yet if used and played like a fly it succeeds in giving excellent sport. It will be found a taking cast if alternated with the caddis-creeper at end of leader with the nymph above it on the leader. In addition to the colored representations of these three insects, I give pen-pictures side by side, to show the stages from creeper to insect, with the artificial imitations of both fly and creeper, in order to simplify the differences between them. Personal preference will dictate how the angler shall fish them, whether singly, as a dry fly, in doubles, or in trebles. I try all, according to conditions. In this chapter I hope to convince fly-fishermen how much better, how superior in artistic attainment it is to have along with you specimens of these nature lures to be ready for use at any time required, rather than the plebeian, dirty method of using garden-worms. The comparison is indeed odious in the extreme, even granting that worms do, at times, catch trout and bass.

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