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Tying The Taxidermist Fly

It is a rare day when everything comes together, great weather, good friends and fantastic fishing. Even rarer are the days when your fishing buddies DON’T take the mick about your flies or technique, but there again it’s all part of the comradery I suppose and makes for a more enjoyable day.

This fly was a joke at first, no-one in the boat took me seriously when I tied it on the top dropper of three while we fished the lochs on some of the Scottish Isles. Laughed so much in fact that one of my companions said “get stuffed!, you can’t be serious, all that’ll catch ye is a cald”.

I cast and let the flies sink a little, then twitched them back, a swirl the size of a car wheel shut them up followed by ten minutes connected to something akin to an express train which resulted in my landing the biggest trout of the trip on this no-name fly– who’s laughing now? After that adventure I thought “The Taxidermist” a rather apt name. It fishes well in peaty stained water up and down the UK.

Materials:

  • Hook: Black Magic (a forged, medium wire hook with a 2X shank) in sizes 10 and 12. I have tied this fly up to size 6 on 4x long shanks for Sea Trout with great success.
  • Body: Gold holographic tinsel – wide
  • Rib: Red copper wire – medium
  • Tag: Glo-Brite floss numbers 6 and 8 in equal quantities
  • Body Hackle: Tan hen – leading edge stripped
  • Head Hackle: Tan hen – long in the fibre
  • Thread: Black preferred, but have had some success with fire red.

Method:

The Taxidermist Fly Step 1

The Taxidermist Fly Step 1

Start the thread 1mm behind the eye and wind down the shank in touching turns to a point opposite the barb.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 2

The Taxidermist Fly Step 2

Take a 125mm length of both Glo-Brite flosses, holding them together; double them over, then over again. Position the floss on the back of the shank, to leave 15mm beyond the bend and wind the thread forward in touching turns towards the eye, stop 2mm from the eye. Remove the surplus and lock down with two tight turns. Apply a coat of head cement to the body and let dry.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 3

The Taxidermist Fly Step 3

Catch in the tinsel on the top of the shank and the wire below.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 4

The Taxidermist Fly Step 4

Secure the tinsel and ribbing wire with touching turns of thread to the bend, and then return the thread in open turns to the starting position.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 5

The Taxidermist Fly Step 5

Wind the tinsel forward in just overlapping turns to2mm behind the eye. Bind tight with thread and remove the surplus tinsel.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 6

The Taxidermist Fly Step 6

Trim the tag to the same length as the gape of the hook. Separate the fibres with a dubbing needle so that they mix.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 7

The Taxidermist Fly Step 7

Select a hackle feather with a good taper, strip the leading edge and bind in place with three tight turns.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 8

The Taxidermist Fly Step 8

Take two turns of the body hackle at the front end, then in 5 or 6 open turns to the bend. Counter wind the rib forward in open turns while keeping tension on the hackle tip, to trap the body hackle. Stop the rib just in front of the hackle. Remove the surplus body hackle and tie down the rib with several tight turns of thread. Remove the surplus wire.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 9

The Taxidermist Fly Step 9

Select a second hackle feather of the same colour but with a fibre as long as the shank, prepare and tie in. Take two or three turns of the head hackle winding the thread once through the last turn and once in front of the last turn to lock it in place, keeping the fibres swept back as you tie.

The Taxidermist Fly Step 10

The Taxidermist Fly Step 10

Remove surplus hackle and wind a small head. Whip finish, apply head cement then whip finish over the top while the cement is still tacky. Re-apply head cement to build a nice head. Believe me if a sea trout gets hold of this fly you will see why I am using belt and braces throughout this tie!

The Taxidermist Fly Step 11

The Taxidermist Fly Step 11

This fly has caught six sea trout and many rainbows and brownies, its still in relatively good nick.

Tight Lines!


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