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Flyfisher for men 03-26-2008 10:18 AM

Green sunfish imitation
I'd like to try to fashion an imitation of a green sunfish as they are very common in the ponds and lakes here, and are an important forage fish for bass.

A lot of the bluegill and other batifish imitations I'm seeing employ bucktail. That's been an obstacle as I don't have any experience with it and it looks a to be a bit over my head as a new tyer.

FlyGal 03-26-2008 10:47 AM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
Buck tail is easy to tie with, even for a beginner. Take a stab at it. What's the pattern that you wish to tie with BT look like?

MrEsox 03-26-2008 11:43 AM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
4 Attachment(s)
Here are a few pics that you might want to take a look at just to get an idea about coloring, material, size, etc. They are both from Cabelas but can be made by hand for cheaper. I often find looking through their flies gives me ideas for my own tying. If you do try bucktail, hope it goes better for you then it does me. I've tryed and it just dont go very well. For a mane, wing, tail it goes well. But anything else it just dont turn out that good. I'm bucktail intolerant. Though I have had my mind on trying a small pattern by making a bunch of poofs and trimming the sides making for a tall/round pattern. Good luck.

FlyGal 03-26-2008 12:04 PM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
I find that the trick to buck tail is not to cinch the threads too tight. All I do is apply each bunch directly on top of the previous (like stacking 2x4's on top of one another) and you can achieve the profile your after.

These are juve alewife...

For fresh I stack the buck tail on top and the underside of the hook rather than just on top for the salt.

fyshstykr 03-26-2008 12:09 PM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
Good info FlyGal.:)

Flyfisher for men 03-26-2008 03:13 PM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
This all looks helpful. Maybe I will try to obtain some bucktail. I always heard it was hard to work.

FlyGal 03-26-2008 03:26 PM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
Deer hair IMHO is much harder to work with...

Another product you could make the sunfish out of is EP fibers (Enrico Puglisi)...Easy stuff to work with, but it does make a mess - gets everywhere....

Frank Whiton 03-26-2008 06:48 PM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
Hi Flyfisher for men,

Buck tail is a wonderful material to tie with. If you are going to tye streamers you need to work with buck tail.

FlyGal is right about it being easier to work with than deer hair. Spinning deer hair is very hard for some people to accomplish.


dshort 03-27-2008 04:53 AM

Re: Green sunfish imitation

Here's another bucktail pattern to give you some ideas. It's called the James Wood Bucktail and was developed by a fly shop owner here in VA. It's suppposed to represent a baby sunfish. I've had some good success with it on smallmouth and you can vary the colors to suit you. It's nothing but a chenille body with a white deer hair wing and then a chenille head. It's really easy to tie.

Fox Statler 03-28-2008 09:36 PM

Re: Green sunfish imitation
Why do think green sunfish are a good bait fish? Seems to me that if they were so good, they would not be so common in your pond. Bass learn at an early age that slab-side fish are hard to swallow, especially those with a tall dorsal fin and long anal fins like any member of the sunfish family. Torpedo shaped fish like suckers and the entire minnow family of fish are the body shape bass prefer. How many small suckers and minnows are in your ponds? This subject is kind of like live and dead minnows. Which do you see the most of? The average lifespan of a minnow is about two years, so why don't we see alot of dead ones? Maybe dead minnows would be a great topwater pattern? Just a thought. I have great luck with minnows alive or dead, top or bottom, big or small.

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