Do you love big bluegill?
Well, I wanted to get some more fish action on the Flicted Damsel nymph that I found. Once I got out from work, I pulled around back and walked up to the pond. Due to the wind, I was once again armed with my 8wt.
The first nymph I tied one was one of the “first round” of nymphs that I tied, in a medium green color. That color was really hot a few days ago. However, since then, there has been an algae bloom in the pond, and water clarity has dropped from a couple feet to about 6”.
I got a few hits on the green version, and even caught a couple fish.
After that, I realized that the color nymph I was using is about the same as the water color, due to the algae bloom. I decided to go with one of my “second batch” ties, that I did in a darker olive.
That was the ticket! Game on!
Well, after a little while of playing with some little ‘gills, I flipped the nymph over just next to some cattails. Before I could even begin to strip in some line, I realized that my furled leader was quickly disappearing under the surface. I clamped down on the line with my rod-hand’s index finger, and pulled my rod up to set the hook.
My rod darn near bent over double! “Whatever” is was, wanted no part of me or my line. Thoughts were running through my head about Channel Cat, but then I began to think a good-size LMB had taken my fly. After a few seconds, “it” came to the top. It wasn’t a LMB, but a monster Hybrid Sunfish.
This thing was just massive! I know, I know, I didn’t have anything with me to give accurate measurements (I have a Hawg Trough in my vehicle, but never use it for bank fishing). I did a rough measurement with my splayed hand. From pinkie tip to thumb tip on my hand is 9”. I’m calling this fish at least 10”:
And, I just had to do a shot down the throat, to show how these fish tend to just inhale this bug:
I managed to get a few more ‘gills:
And finally, one last Hybrid Sunnie:
Nice work if you can get it!
Good job, Allen
Indeed, nice narrative. For the bug, mind attaching the bug's in its full form in a link. Air and water temp if you have it will increase the data collection even further. Great work Allen.
Leo, I've posted a few pics of the the bug in question. It's called a "Flicted Damsel".
I didn't take a water temp reading, but I'm assuming that water temps are in the mid-80's. Air temps were mid- to upper-90's.
Thanks Allen. Now it's more completed.
I didn't think to look at my barometer. It was in my PFD.
The weather station will provide all that in a general overview. Down on the water is a whole different monster when it comes to water and air temps.
Got some info on how to tie the flicted damsel nymph. Will try at the small scale. I don't think I have large enough material to make for the 4/0 hooks.
I actually do have a handheld barometer in my vehicle. I usually set the gold arm at the air pressure at the start of the trip. When I come back, I look at it again to see if the air pressure has fallen or risen while I was fishing. I usually start a text message to someone on my phone, record water temp, air pressure, flow rate (if known) etc. I then "save as draft" and wait until I get home to enter that data into my fishing log.
I probably should try to do a step-by-step, with pics. It will be the first one of those for me, if I do it.
size 8 wet fly hook
eyes: black bead chain
thread: 6/0, in a color a little darker than the marabou
Tail: marabou feather, olive, green, etc. This is tied as an extended body.
Body: The remainder of the marabou feather, twisted into a rope.
Wingcase: pheasant tail fibers
Legs: remainder of the Pheasant fibers.
I start this one a large needle mounted in the vise. Start the thread on the needle, then tie in the feather about 1/2" from the tip. A couple wraps to secure the feather to the needle, then spiral the thread back, towards the tip of the feather. You want to stop when you get about 1/8" from the tip. Give it a couple wraps, then spiral back to the tie-in point. Secure it with a few half-hitches. I do a BIG loop for the half-hitches, so I can feed the entire feather through the loop. DO NOT cut the feather! Once you get the half-hitches done (I usually do three), cut the thread, and slide the feather off the needle.
Mount a hook in the vise. Start the thread, then tie-in the eyes. I like to put a little Sally Hansen's on the figure-eight wraps for the eyes. Advance the thread to the bend of the hook, and tie-in the feather. I like to tie the feather in not where I've already wrapped it, but just in front of that, so that the tail will "waggle" a bit in the water. Once the tail is secured, advance the thread to just behind the eyes. Twist the feather into a "rope" of marabou, then wrap that around the hook until you reach the eyes. Capture the feather with the thread, give it a few wraps, then cut the feather. Wind the thread around the body a bit towards teh bend again. Take the pheasant tie fibers, tie them down with the cut end facing forward. Advance the thread back to behind the eyes. Pull the Pheasant fibers forward, over the eye of the hook, and capture with the thread. Split the fibers into right and left, pull them back towards the tail, and tie them down with thread. Coat the wing case with Flexament, if desired. Form the head with thread just in front of the eyes, then whip finish, cut the thread, and coat with Sally Hansen's.
Got the logistic of the tye. You material description placed it over the top. Will definitely try on my day off, when the kids don't drive me insane.
I can understand that! They'll be going back to school soon.......I can't wait!
I forgot to mention. My first tie, used black thread. That fly has held up rather well. My subsequent ties have utilized a 6/0 brown thread. What I've noticed, is that within the first few casts, the thread wraps that hold the tail together manage to come off. This basically turns the "Flicted Damsel" into a Bead Chain Marabou Wooly Bugger, with a pheasant tail wingcase and legs. It does NOT diminish the catching abilities of the fly.
Take it for what it's worth. If you find this tie to be a little to involved, forget about doing the whole detached body on a needle thing. Just tie a Bead Chain marabou bugger. I'm not even sure if the wing case and legs are needed; I haven't tried a marabou bugger yet.
Don't remind me about back to school...UGHH..
Got the point on the thread and the wing case. The original instruction in 1997 indicated just to use the wooly bugger body to simulate wing case, where the tail provides that enticement of the emerging damsel fly. Good enough for me. Less work, more play.
now youre talking my speed. A "bead chain marabou bugger" I can understand!