When you’re sight fishing redfish in the clear water of West Central and Southwest Florida, you’re forced to continuously refine your game. Our redfish are heavily pressured and when you combine that with clear water, our fish can get fairly sketched out at times. There are plenty of days when we have happy and honest redfish, but there are also days when we have to work harder to fool fish.
One of the unique advantages to fly fishing for redfish is that you can tailor almost everything about the fake food (fly) you’re trying to get them to eat. Fly tyers have the ability to make flies smaller, tie flies on smaller hooks, or even use less shiny hooks. We can tie flies that move when our line isn’t moving and we can reduce or eliminate flash in our flies.
I have four different flies that I like to use when we’re sight fishing redfish. Although I use only four different styles of flies, I tie many variations of each pattern. Some variations are for low light days while others are designed to be fished at different depths. The fly in the picture is a crustacean version of a baitfish pattern that I use. I changed very little from the original pattern. I did add some mallard flank, splayed the feathers in the back and added mini clouser eyes. We’ll see how it pans out, but it looks like it’ll get eaten to me.