a Disco Shrimp

even if it isn’t even half as discoish as the infamous ‘discodildo on a hook’  what remains is a really nifty shrimp imitation well worth having for when its time to dredge river and stream beds for as noted in the title, grayling, but also trout, barbel, carp, masheer (i caught my first masheer in Malaysia on a shrimp/scud imitation), yellowfish and whatever else species you might have in your part of the world that eat freshwater shrimp and most do.
maybe more than the pattern itself, what caught my attention where several really good tying tips and tricks that are more than worth looking at carefully for tiers of all levels.
several of these methods can easily be taken over to other fly patterns, such as:
– controlling latex back widths by varying tension and stretching it well before cutting off so the little uncut part of the strip retracts.
– cutting the brush fibres of a toothbrush to make a nifty dubbing puller. serrated blade scissors work very well for this. apart from my usual tying tools, two that get used a lot are toothbrushes, one left as-is for general brushing and fly grooming (yeah, i know that sounds a little weird but weird is good !) and one trimmed as in the video.
the trimmed brush, with its longer fibres does a better job with bushier flies such as this shrimp or streamers than the standard velcro on lolly-stick tool.
– flattening the finished fly with pliers to finish its shape. i do this regularly with nymphs. sometimes in the vertical way as with this shrimp, sometimes on the horizontal as with crawling/stone clinger mayfly nymph imitations. using the striations of the pliers is also a cool way to add texture to varnished or uv resined flies.

i probably forgot a few tips but i’m sure you’ll find them in this great tutorial. enjoy !

an ugly fly for an ugly fish

if ever there was a friggin’ ugly and stupid looking fish, this is it.
uglylipsgrayling

grayling  (Thymallus thymallus):  their flaccid, distorted, insecure ‘Angelina‘ lips and biology class dead frog expressions are the disgrace of the animal world.
often referred to as “The Lady of the Streams” by what must be myopic, sexually repressed, football or hockey-on-tv-watching anglers, we’ll note that this expression is a horrible insult to women of all kinds.  i’d gladly sucker-punch the ******** who came up with the term and greatly incourage you to do the same next time you hear those despicable words.

these things often live in pods where there can be hundreds of them scrounging around meaninglessly right around your feet. once found, the hardest challenge for the angler is to avoid stepping on them while wading. once hooked, they fight like they look: like a flip-flopping one-legged sheep with butt cancer and to make things worse…  just like vampires, a lot of these creepy things don’t even show up on film leaving the impression that the whole thing was just a bad dream  !

no grayling

anyhow, a lot of us live in areas where trout fishing is closed during their reproductive season and we’re left to resort to  this soggy species if we want to fish in rivers so, as pitiful as these creatures may be they still need to eat and to trick them we’ll often need to resort to ‘flie’s that match their looks, personalities and lack of  taste.
along the same lines as a Happy-Meal placed in front of a pimply kid, this strange, unnatural and otherwise all-around offensive ‘discodildo on a hook’ wakes up these stupid fish’s appetites and gets them to open their disgusting mouths long enough to set the hook.
this fly-thing is very heavy and it’s not really safe to cast. it’s lobbed Euro-Nymphing style through fast and deep pools and holes and we dredge the bottom where these horrid fish hide in shame waiting for something ugly to be swept downstream into their gross mouths.
the line/leader  is tight and takes are usually lacking in subtlety so all we have to do is lift the rod and slide the slimy thing to the net, slip out the ‘fly’ and let it go back where it belongs. job done, next.

disco-dildo (a grayling fly)

made with-
no love whatsoever but a deep sense of desperation mingled with an overwhelming urge to offend any dry-fly purist i might meet on the water.

hook– Partridge “pre-leaded for ugly fish, grub style” #12.
flatten out the round body with pliers so it doesn’t look like a jumbo hotdog when finished.
be sure to sharpen the points as they’re pre-dulled at the factory.
under thread – anything white and cheap, it’s just to make a nice smooth discodildo shape that will be covered by:
abdomen‘ –  Glitter Thread chose the color to match your own tastes, these fish are too dumb to see the difference
head–  Demmon Hot Spot Thread in orange. they’re attracted to orange and considering there’s no orange food available to them naturally, this makes perfect sense.

i’m always fond of saying that “any fish is a good fish”, except for grayling…