Monday, December 7, 2009

The Arctic Fox

The Arctic Fox
Hook: Partridge CS10/1 size 1/0
Thread: 8/0 white uni
Tip: fine gold thread
Tag: pale pink silk
Tail: Golden pheasant crest
Butt: black ostrich
Body: rear 3/5 white silk, fore 2/5 spun white arctic fox fur picked out roughly
Rib: 2 strands each green Krystal flash #19, Florescent orange Krystal flash #01, pink Krystal flash #04, 3 strands pearlescent Flashabou Medium oval gold tinsel counterwound with fine gold thread
Hackle: Golden pheasant crest, tied long, Lady Amherst crest from the Arctic fox fur.
Collar: cobalt blue vulturine guinea fowl
Wing: white Arctic Fox Fur
Topping: Golden Pheasant crest

 The Arctic Fox, a ubiquitous little predator of the high Arctic.  Supremely adapted to the rigours of the long Arctic winter nights as well as the long summer days of relative plenty. Both hunter and scavenger, it follows the Polar bear, gleaning scraps from the great bear's kills.  In Spring and Summer it haunts seabird rookeries, stealing eggs and chicks, eating some, caching others in preparation of the always on the horizon, winters famine.  When voles and lemmings are plentiful, it feeds heavily, and as always, hordes food in shallow scrapes.  Winter is not long away and the fox seems ever mindful of this.  In this fly design, I have tried to incorporate the elements of the foxes habitat, ice, cold, water, sunlight and the Aurora Borealis, the northern lights.  Ice gleaming and reflective of colours above seen in the white silk and various shades of reflective mylar and tinsel.   Water and sky seen in the blue of the collar, and also reflected in the tinsels of the ribbing.  Sunlight, ever bright in summer is seen in the topping and tail. The Northern Lights show in the mixed hackles, light, airy, ephemeral and full of energy and again in the tinsels of the tip and ribbing.  And of course, the fox itself, represented in the white of the wing, as it sits, partly on snow and partly on ice with it's sometimes companion, the beautifully pink Ross's gull, another equally adept Arctic denizen. 

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