Autumn Lamb Shad & Bluegill
By Mike Hogue
Below autumn lamb patch:
A new material for 1998 is autumn lamb. Autumn lamb is very similar to artic fox in that the texture of the hair is fine and has incredible motion to it....almost like marabou. Some tiers in Michigan are using this for pike and musky flies and are calling it "Pike Marabou" since it is durable and has a very good action.
One of the main troubles with artic fox is the price. Artic Fox patches are running about $5 to $6 for these really dinky patches in which you get about enough fox to make 1-2 flies.
The reason for this is that most of the artic fox patches are coming from Finland and it is my understanding that the fellow doing the packaging is , how shall we say this?......Mmm well, he is a cheap weasel.
One of my suppliers got so fed up he started looking around and came up with the lamb as an alternative. It is really cool stuff, unlike almost anything you've tied with......the closest similar thing is maybe Icelandic sheep.
When I got a sample, I looked at it and I was immediately reminded of the Whitlock Sheep Shad Series of flies and so I starting tying up a few of these. When I first made the original sheep shads, I always had trouble as they were really way too complicated to make with the bent hooks and such.....(sorry Dave). Also this fly never fished very well for me.
Again I thought about this for a bit and I was reminded of a similar fly my friend Mark Smith makes called the Smith's Shad which is a pretty good fly. So I combined what I liked best about each fly and this what I came up with.
Hook: Kamasan B940 size 1
Thread: Red Fly Master Plus
Body: Gray Autumn Lamb top and Bottom with a Crystal Flash Center and Saltwater Flash-a-bou stips
Cheeks: Mallard Breast with 1/4" tsick on eyes.
To tie: flip the hook upside down. Start your thread and tie in one bunch about the size of a pencil.
Flip hook up right to normal tying position. Tie in about 5-7 strands of Crystal flash on each side. Add a strip of saltwater flash a bou each side.
Tie in another clump of lamb and attach the cheeks so that they flare out. Attach eyes and whip finish.
Mike's Autumn Lamb Bluegill
Hook: Kamasan B940 Size1
Thread: Red Fly Master Plus
Body:Olive Over Yellow Autumn Lamb ( top) and Orange Autumn Lamb (bottom) with Green Grizzly saddle hackle sides and gold holographic flash-a-bou center
Cheeks: Cock pheasant saddle feathers w/ a med Holographic 3D eye.
For this fly you pretty much do the same as above.The main differnece is in stacking colors. Tie on orange on the bottom and put yellow on the top ( first) followed by the olive. The center has about 5-7 strands of gold holographic flash-a-bou. The hackles in the center are saddles but you could use Chinese neck or capons if you like. I use the pheasant to imitate the gills of the bluegills.
Tying notes: This material will slim done a bunch in the water. So you need to put on more than you think you need. Also, it is hard to get get tiny, tight heads with this stuff. If you notice, mine are pretty chunky, which is actually normal for this material. It helps to comb the bottom or pull some of the fuzzy bottom hair off.
The action is very good and this is really a pretty simple fly. You could use this behind deer hair if you like and the steelheaders are really nuts over this stuff. One tier bought a bunch from me and uses it for marabou between 2 mallard flanks for a shad.
So how do you say go suck an egg in Finnish?............Heheheehheh.....just kidding, Mike
For more Info Contact:
Mike Hogue / Badger Creek Fly Tying / 622 West Dryden Road, Freeville, NY 13068