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Part One Hundred fourty-three

Super Silver Minnow

By Tom Keith, Lincoln, Nebraska

The super Silver Minnow is an excellent minnow-imitating fly. Tie it in a number of sizes and always have a few with you in your fly bos. We also tie this pattern with mallard breast feathers that have been dyed green, gold, or black. Sometimes in different parts of the country or in waters that are stained to various degrees, one color will out-produce others.

Super Silver Minnow


Hook:  Mustad 9672 or 9674, sizes 4-10.

Thread:  Black, pre-waxed.

Tail:  Mallard breast or flank feather fibers.

Weight:  Lead Wire.

Underbody:  Silk Floss.

Body:  Flat silver tinsel wrapped to cover floss.

Wing:  Blue, Yellow, white, orange and light green marabou.

Overwing:  Mallard breast or flank feather.

Tying Steps:

1. Place hook in vise and secure tying thread to hook shank. Tie in a small bunch of mallard blank or breast feather fibers at bend of hook for tail.

2. Wrap front third of hook shank with lead wire, (or substitute if illegal in your region) wrap tying thread through wire and cement.

3. Tie in a 6-inch length of silk floss (any color) just ahead of the lead wire.

4. Wrap floss backward to point where tail was tied on. Wrap the floss forward again, forming a smooth body. Tie in a 6-inch length of flat silver tinsel behind hook eye.

5. Wrap tinsel backward completely covering floss body, then wrap forward again. Tie off behind hook eye and trim excess tinsel.

6. Tie in a small bunch of white marabou feather fibers about 1/4 inch behind hook eye.

7. Repeat with each successive color of marabou and then trim tips so none of the fibers extend over hook eye.

8. Select a mallard flank or breast feather that is about half-again as long as the hook shank, and has a fairly straight stem. There should be an equal amount of feather fibers (barbules) on each side of the stem. Tie feather in along top of hook shank with concave side down along the shank, so the feather bends downward beyond the hook bend.

9. Form head, whip finish, trim and cement.

When we fish this pattern we try to make it imitate a crippled or wounded minnow as closely as possible. Predator species are attracted to crippled prey because it is easier for them to catch. We recommend a slow erratic retrieve close to crappie holding cover, like partially submerged trees and weed beds. Try retrieving it at various depths until you find fish. The Super Silver Minnow is not only a deadly crappie pattern, it will also take largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleye, northern pike and other species when tied in appropriate sizes. ~ Tom Keith

Credits: From Fly Tying and Fishing for Panfish & Bass published by Frank Amato Publications. We greatly appreciate use permission.

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