Allan Liddle's April Tutorial is the Heather Beetle. To tie this fly using Allans step-by-step tutorial, click on the materials image at the bottom of this blog post!

Last month Allan took us through the March Brown Jingler, click here to find out more.


Spring Beetle Mania!

Sometimes, following a mild and relatively dry winter such as the one we’ve just had we can get a ‘Beetle Spring’ when the native Heather beetle emerges in plague like proportions and inevitably find their way onto our lochs and upland streams.

Initially the trout might be a little slow to ‘cash in’ on the bountiful food source, perhaps it takes a little time for them to recognise these beetles as a prey item, however once they do ‘lock on’ the fish will often go into a feeding frenzy and this early season protein hit can be very welcome indeed.

Not that it happens all the time and often you can go several seasons before you encounter a decent Heather Beetle ‘fall’ but then again it can be very localised and as such it’s worth having a wee foam beetle pattern or two tucked away for just such an event.

That said it is a handy wee pattern to have anyway and prospecting in hot summer days beneath overhanging trees has grabbed the attention of more than one or two fish for me over the years.

Robust and easy to tie, let alone easy to fish, my wee adaptation of a foam beetle works for me and if you’re lucky enough to encounter a Spring / early Summer ‘hatch’ then give it a swim, one other wee tip if you do - hold on tight as takes are usually not very subtle.



Hook: Partridge L5A Dry Fly Supreme or G3AY Sproat Wet (Barbless)

Thread: Uni 6/0 or 8/0

Shellback / Thorax Cover: Black 3mm foam cut to 5mm wide strip

Abdomen: Peacock Glister

Hot Spot: Pinch of Scarlet Seals Fur

Thorax: As abdomen

Thorax Cover: As shellback, pulled tight to help keep bulk down and form tapered shape

Head Hackle: Two turns ginger cock trimmed level below to ensure low riding profile



Allan Liddle

Based in Moray in Scotland's North East, Allan has specialises with the wild trout from the rivers and burns, lochs and lochans throughout Mainland Scotland and the Isles. A strong passion for fishing simple dries he feels there's nothing better than to see the fish take off the top, but isn't slow to fish a range of different styles when mood or conditions dictate. Although trout is his first love Allan occasionally chases the Salmon, Grayling stocked fish and even dabbles in salt water when the chance arises.

Allan has also represented Scotland at international level, is a GAIA qualified trout instructor and a has been a regular contributor to Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Magazine for almost twenty years. Allan’s love of fly tying spans almost thirty years and has been a regular at many tying demonstrations and work shops prior to, and since joining the Partridge Pro-Team in 2013.

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