Types of Fly Tying Hooks
Fly fishing hooks are made from materials such as stainless steel or nickel, and are designed with different features for the various types of flies. These hooks can have long, short, curved, or straight shanks, depending on the shape and size of the finished fly.
If you are a beginner, you may want to buy a few fly tying kits that have all of the materials needed for tying specific types of flies, including the right types of hooks. Once you learn more about the fly tying and fly fishing basics, you can always buy your hooks or materials separately.
Barbless Fly Hooks
Fly tying hooks can be made either barbed or barbless. Barbless hooks are often used by anglers who practice catch and release fly fishing because they can be easily removed without causing additional harm to the fish. Although, any type of barbed fly fishing hook can be made barbless by crimping the barb flat using a pair of pliers.
Dry Fly Hooks
Fly hooks used for tying dry flies are made from lightweight wire and have a shorter shank. The eye on most classic dry fly hooks is also usually turned down so that the fly sits properly on the surface of the water. Dry fly hooks are used for tying flies such as the Parachute Adams pattern or Caddis.
Streamer hooks are used for tying flies like Woolly Buggers or Clousers. Some articulated streamer fly patterns have multiple sections that will require a streamer hook with a long shank. Also, when tying flies that have bulky heads, a wide gap streamer hook should be used.
Nymph Fly Hooks
Fly hooks that are used when tying nymph patterns, such as stonefly nymphs or mayfly nymphs, are generally made from heavier wire and have longer shanks. The heavier wire hook helps to ensure that your nymph pattern sinks. Most nymph hooks have either down turned eyes or straight eyes.
Saltwater Fly Hooks
Larger and thicker than freshwater hooks, saltwater fly hooks are usually made out of a corrosion-resistant or treated metal, such as stainless steel, that will withstand the harsh ocean elements. These types of hooks are used to tie various saltwater baitfish and crustacean patterns, such as pinfish or crab patterns.
Learn about different types of Fishing flies, aquatic insects, and starter fishing flies in our next section.