Bob Popovics’ Surf Candy is the epoxy streamer fly that started a revolution in modern fly patterns for saltwater gamefish. This tough epoxy streamer tied with synthetic materials is a perfect imitation of small, slender baitfish like silversides, sand eels, and small anchovies. The Surf Candy is famous for it’s durability and attractiveness to a wide range of species including striped bass, bluefish, and false albacore, but any fish that prey on small, bright baitfish will love the Popovics’ Surf Candy.
The Gurgler Fly Pattern is a floating fly that spits and “gurgles” when stripped, and is designed to imitate everything from shrimp to baitfish and a frog for bass.
Invented by the late Jack Gartside, the Gurger is a simple and very effective fly to tie, and the tying technique has even been incorporated into mouse flies for trout.
It can be tied in many different colours and sizes. White, Tan, Shrimp, Chartreuse and Olive are favourites among many fishing guides in both the salt and freshwater.
The Hare and Copper Nymph is an easy and effective fly to tie. Arguably NZ's most popular nymph and the first nymph most beginner tiers will tackle. The Hare and Copper Nymph catches fish throughout the country in a variety of waters. The standard pattern is tied without a bead, with or without weight, depending on the fishing situation.
The Squimp Fly is very simple to tie, but lethal for countless flats species.
The Squimp fly very closely imitates a small shrimp, which is the main forage for any bonefish. It also works for other saltwater flats fishes.
The Squimp fly can be tied in many colour variations. Pink works but the traditional tan is the most popular and the most effective. The Squimp fly can be tied with heavy or light eyes, depending on the depth of the flat and the spookiness of the fish.
The Woolly Bugger is a very versatile pattern that will catch fish on virtually any lake or river. It can be tied in a variety of colour combinations, usually natural ones such at black, brown and olive.
The basic woolly bugger pattern is fairly simple, however, don’t be afraid to experiment. Remember, any fly that catches fish is a good fly. Below you’ll find some variations as tied by Club member and Fly Tie Coordinator Ben Hicks (red was the colour of the day, apparently).
Primarily tied as a general nymph pattern, the Rabbit Fly also makes a pretty good imitation of small dragonfly nymphs that emerge in huge numbers on many Australian lakes. The Rabbit Fly has a collar and tail of soft rabbit fur that moves well in the water, even when the fly is retrieved very slowly.
The appropriately named Foxy’s Horror is designed by Rod Fox, of Hunter Valley Fly Fishing Club, is a great bass fly for rivers.
The Flashback Pheasant Tail Nymph is a variation of the classic Pheasant Tail Nymph. It’s body, tail and rib are the same as the original, but the thorax of this pattern includes a few strands of pearl Lurex laid over the peacock herl. Pearl Lurex gives a wonderful flash and sparkle to any fly and only a small amount of the material is used to keep the effect as subtle as possible.
Throughout Australia the Red Tag is excellent fished to surface feeding trout in rivers or still water (it is also a must-have for herring!). The fly is a half imitator and half attractor; the red tag, the peacock herl and, to some extent, the brown hackle attracting the fish.
Designed by Terry Griffiths and Peter Gathercole in the 1960s, the Black Tadpole takes the use of turkey marabou for highly mobile wings and tails to it’s logical conclusion. The Tadpole’s tail is highly mobile and much longer than its body, giving it plenty of movement in still water.