Peacock Bass

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Peacock Bass
Jumbo Critter
LA Tail Feathers
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Peacock Bass From Rio Negro
Got these pictures & testimony via FLYH2O...
inside tip on a couple of hot flies for large peacock bass in South America.

Last year I sent you a photo from my peacock bass fishing trip to the Rio Negro. During that trip, I caught the three largest peacock bass caught at the Rio Negro Lodge during Thanksgiving week on your FPF Hot Pink/Red Wahoo World Record Series (a 23 lb [see first attachment to this e-mail] and two 20 lb peacocks). My wife traveled to the Rio Negro Lodge with me this past week and she caught the biggest fish of the week on the Amazon Queen II on your FPF Green Mackerel World

Record Series fly [a 21 lb peacock--second attachment to this e-mail]. She also caught a number of other peacocks on the same fly (see pictures of 18 and 14 lb peacocks attached to this e-mail). I caught the third largest peacock (a 19 lb fish) of the week on my favorite FPF Hot Pink/Red Wahoo World Record Series as well as a number of other fish over 10 lbs. [see photos of 17 and 13 lb peacocks attached to this e-mail].

Your flies are outstanding in several ways. They are clearly the best flies for big peacock bass (we have consistently out-fished others using other fly patterns) and the hooks and constructions are
sufficiently rugged to stand up to getting big fish out of the timber of the Rio Negro. They also stand up to piranhas. With other flies, piranhas tear them up within an hour or two. I have fished your flies for days without them being destroyed. In fact, the only time I have lost flies are when other fishing friends and guides do not return them after borrowing them.
Thank you for an outstanding series of flies.
Larry R. Dalton

The Jumbo Critter Steelhead Fly

In our continuing research into Intruder type steelhead flies the Jumbo Critter is somewhat unique in construction using spun hair and Lady Amherst's tail feather fibers as hackle material. These materials give the "Critter" a look in the water that is distinctive and addresses tying techniques that can be exploited in other fly patterns. The Critter comes from the vise of Bjorn Beach, who’s had no small amount of influence on the Alaska Chinook-fishing scene in the past.  The Jumbo Critter has

Pattern: Jumbo Critter, Black & Blue
Shank: 35 mm Waddington Shank
Hook: #1 Gamakatsu Octopus
Tying Cement: Anglers Corner Water Base Head Cement
Thread: Black 3/0 Uni
Tail: none
Rear Collar Hackle: Fl. Blue Bucktail
Rib: Large Silver Oval Tinsel
Body: Black Angora Dubbing
Front Collar Hackle: Black Bucktail & Kingfisher Blue Lady Amherst's Tail Feather Fibers
Head: Black Angora over Medium Lead Eyes
Head Cement: Anglers Corner Water Base Head Cement

found its way south to steelhead rivers such as the Sandy, Clackamas, Hoh, Skagit and Skykomish. Depending on the way it is tied, the Critter can have either a slim or robust nature.  Be sure to leave the wire cable loop long enough so that hooks can be changed as needed.

Position the shank in the vise & wind on a foundation of tying thread.

Secure loop of Toothy Critter wire with a hook attached.


Tie in a dubbing loop of fine copper about five inches long.

Place fluorescent blue bucktail in your Magic Tool and then position the bucktail hairs in the wire loop.

Spin the wire loop with a dubbing crook.  This will turn the bucktail into hackling material.

Wind this bucktail hackle onto the rear of the Waddington Shank like a hackle.

Tie in a strand of large oval silver tinsel.

Form  a dubbing loop in your tying thread, fill the loop with black angora, spin the loop and wrap on the dubbing to form a fuzzy body.

Leave enough room to wrap on the hackle and tie on the lead eyes.

Rib the body with the oval silver tinsel.

Tie in another 5-inch loop of copper wire.

Prepare some black bucktail with your Magic Tool. Fill the wire loop with black bucktail and twist the wire to form another bucktail hackle.

Wrap on the bucktail hackle. The density of this hackle will determine the over-all bulk of the fly.

Select a kingfisher blue Amherst's Pheasant tail feather.

Shown here is a section of feather with the stem attached being held by a Magic Tool. A section of feather fibers may be cut loose from the stem and then inserted into the Magic Tool as an alternative method.  It is easier to separate the fibers while keeping them aligned while they are still attached to the stem. Use a needle or a wire pronged pet brush to separate the fibers.

Remove the stem and prepare the fibers to be twisted in a wire loop using your Magic Tool.

Wind on the hackle you have prepared from the Amherst's tail fibers.

Attach a pair of nickel plated brass or lead eyes. A small drop of Zap-A-Gap super glue will help secure the eyes.

Over-wrap the eyes with angora dubbing. finish the head, tie off the thread and coat with a drop of head cement.

This is a commercially made Jumbo Critter as it is produced by Solitude Fly Company.  You will not that it is much sparser than the fly we have tied.  Both flies are tied properly and the amount of bulk in the fly depends on your personal taste and the water you are fishing.

Lady Amherst's Tail Feathers
Looking at the picture of the bird makes you wonder what natural selection could have evolved
such a gaudy specimen? Yet when you look at the bird or it's feathers on this page, you are seeing the feathers against a monotone background to make them stand out for display purposes. When you view these same feathers on the bird in their natural colors against a natural deep forest background the stripes and bars break up the form of the bird like stripes on a tiger. This train of thought gets even more interesting when you consider that Amherst's Pheasants, Golden Pheasants and tigers co-exist in the same natural environment.  Amherst's tail fibers marry well together and sections from these feathers is sometimes used for strip wings on steelhead and salmon flies. The most common use for Amherst's is as hackling material for large Intruder style winter steelhead flies such as the Jumbo Critter. The fibers are removed from the feather and spun in a loop of wire. The twisted wire serves as the stem of a hackle which is spun onto a hook.  The fibers are then separated so that they will have more movement when wet.
Item Description Color Price To Top
210-150B Lady Amhersts Pheasant Single Tail Feather, Natural Black and White $17.00 SALE ENDED
210-151B Lady Amhersts Pheasant Single Tail Feather, Hot Pink $17.00 SALE ENDED
210-152B Lady Amhersts Pheasant Single Tail Feather, Hot Orange $17.00 SALE ENDED
210-153B Lady Amhersts Pheasant Single Tail Feather, Hot Red $17.00 SALE ENDED
210-156B Lady Amhersts Pheasant Single Tail Feather, Kingfisher Blue $17.00 SALE ENDED
210-157B Lady Amhersts Pheasant Single Tail Feather, Purple $17.00 SALE ENDED

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Mark & Patty

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