Mayer’s Mini Leech

Posted on March 4th, 2021 in Fly Tying Videos

Mayer’s Mini Leech and Discussion of New Fly Design

This one is a little different. I first tie a basic leech pattern, Mayer’s Mini Leech, then go through the steps I’ve taken to develop this basic idea into a different pattern imitating a small sculpin. This is the process I typically follow when designing new patterns, and I thought viewers might be interested in my mindset as I work out a new fly.

Here’s the basic pattern recipe:

Hook: 1x short, 1x strong scud, #12-16.

Bead (optional): Black or copper brass or tungsten to match hook size.

Thread: 6/0 or 8/0 to match overall fly color.

Underbody/Flash: One strand of Flashabou doubled back on itself at tie in, then wrapped forward. Good colors can match the wing or contrast it: olive, red, brown, etc.

Wing: Pine squirrel strip in leech, baitfish, or flesh colors. Good colors include: olive, black, rust, chocolate, wine, purple, tan, and gray.

Head: Single strand of ostrich herl to match wing.

I am still working out the sculpin derived from this fly (and don’t know if it will work), so no recipe for that one just yet.

Fishing Tips

In lakes, fish the fly either twitched or drifted under an indicator, or with a slow retrieve on a sink-tip line. In rivers, it can work dead-drifted under a large dry fly like a foam hopper, or as part of a nymph rig. Don’t hesitate to fish the pattern behind a larger streamer as your “second chance fly.”