January 2010

Wiggle Nymph

Steve Jacobsen

Wiggle Nymph

Hooks: 2 #20 nymph hooks. One should be straight eyed
Thread: 8/0 black unwaxed
Tail:Red Squirrel Tail
Ribbing: Fine copper wire
Abdomen: Squirrel underbody fur
Thorax: Squirrel underbody fur and guard hairs
Wing case: Turkey tail
Connector: 4X tippet

Comments and Tying Instructions:
This is a Swisher and Richards fly which mimics the swimming motion of a mayfly nymph as it makes it break for the surface. These two obsessive-compulsive types spent years studying the behavior of aquatic insects and crustaceans both in aquariums and in their stream environments. They discovered that caddis emergers use their legs for propulsion while the majority of mayflies swim to the surface using an undulating "dolphin kick" with their abdomens. They designed this fly to ape that motion.

Place the straight-eyed hook in the vise and tie in 6-8 squirrel tail strands, about 1-1/2 times the hook length. Tie on the ribbing, spin a tight noodle of squirrel underbody. Dub to the hook eye, wind the copper wire ribbing and whip finish. Remove the hook from the vise and clip off the barb at the top of the bend with a wire cutter.

Place the second hook in the vise. Thread about 6 inches of 4X tippet through the straight-eyed hook and place the doubled tippet material across the lenth of the second fly, wrapping it on with 3-4 thread turns. Pull the tippet ends so that the back hook eye snugs up to the front hook bend. Wind the thread to the front, bend the tippet material back toward the rear of the hook and wind back to the hook bend and clip off excess. This technique doubly secures the tippet so that the back end doesn't slip off on your first strike.

At the hook bend, tie in 8-12 turkey tail strands and form a dubbing loop. Wax the loop and apply a mixture of squirrel underbody and guard hairs. Spin the loop and wind the dubbing forward, leaving ample room for a nice head. Pull the turkey tail feathers forward and whip finish.

Even if this fly didn't attract fish (which I assure you, it does) its a great conversation starter streamside.

Photograph ©2009 by Marv Slind