Fly Of The Week
Flashy Anchovy
Flashy Anchovy
By Capt. Bob Turley

Previous Flies
Fly Tying Terms

When fishing extremely heavy schools of bait, you need a fly which matches the bait but stands out from the rest. One thing these baits all have in common is they flash. In large schools these fish dart, turn and leap out of the water when pursued by larger fish. Sunlight strikes their silvery sides and reflects back a flashy, shimmering effect in the water. For as long as I can remember, spin fishermen have used spoons which produce good catches. To me a spoon doesn't resemble a baitfish, but suggests the flash of a fleeing one.

I've spent a lot of time at the tying bench and have come up with a pattern, which is easy to tie. It resembles a Bay Anchovy and has a flashy underside. Local fishermen and myself have fished this pattern for Striped Bass and Bluefish successfully throughout the year. This fly also produces Albacore and Bonito on days when these fish can be frustrating.


Hook:  Tiemco 800S 2 or 4.

Thread:  Monofilament ultra fine.

Lower Wing:  White fish hair or smoke super hair.

Center Stripe:  Silver sparkleflash.

Upper Wing:  Olive super hair.

Body:  Witchlite decorator tape #193.

Eyes:  Silver adhesive eyes.

Epoxy:  Devcon five-minute.

Tying Steps:

1. Place hook in vise point down, wrap mono thread behind eye of hook, tie in one eighth inch bunch of fish hair or super hair (white or smoke) on under side of hook, wind thread three quarters of the way down the hook shank, split fish hair into equal parts on each side of hook bend and then wind back to hook eye.

2. Tie in an equal amount of fish hair or super hair (white or smoke) on top of hook shank, wind thread three quarters of the way down the hook shank and wind back to eye, moisten five or six stands of silver Sparkleflash and double around mono thread, tie sparkflash on top of fish hair behind hook eye with two or three turns of thread.

3. Tie in a three-sixteenths inch bunch of olive super hair directly above sparkleflash behind hook eye with about ten turns of thread, hold upper and lower wings together by pinching two fingers together from the side at bend of hook and pulling away from hook eye for desired shape, use a small amount of epoxy on the first three quarters of hook shank using a dubbing needle to push epoxy into Fish hair and hold until epoxy sets.

4. Cut two pieces of witchlite to form lower body from hook eye to one half inch past bend of hook, remove paper backing on witchlite and stick to underside of fly at silver stripe on both sides, pinch bottom together and wind head at hook eye and whip finish.

5. Stick eyes on head of fly, coat with epoxy let dry and trim to desired length and shape.

6. This pattern can also tied in smaller sizes with the hook inverted. Reverse the steps and add a small piece of lead to the belly.

For more information on New England coastal fishing, check out my related story here. ~ Bob

About Bob:

Bob is a USCG Licensed Captain and fly-fishing guide from Stratford CT, and owner of North Coast Charters, just 45 minutes from New York City. He specializes in saltwater Fly and Light Tackle Charters. He fishes coastal Connecticut and Southern Rhode Island for Striped Bass, Bluefish, Bonito and False Albacore. You can reach him at (203) 378-1160.

For more great flies, check out: Beginning Fly Tying, Intermediate Fly Tying and Advanced Fly Tying.

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