Invicta Flies - Squirrel Tail Streamer
Having given way to trends in recent years, the Squirrel Tail Streamer has not seen much use these days. However, it still holds its own as a great pattern representing small fish in rivers and creeks. The pattern really brings out the beautiful natural colors and markings of the squirrel tail hair. Choose the color that best matches local daces and darters. If you hunt and/or preserve your own materials, this is a good chance to use those squirrel tails from this season.
1) Secure thread to rear half of shank, winding back to the bend.
2) Clip a section of red marabou from the side of the feather about half an inch wide. Be sure to use fibers which taper to a point, and align the tips before clipping. Tie in at bend, making the length from one half to 3/4 the length of the hook gap. Lash down the remainder of the marabou to the top of the shank, up to a hook eye width behind the eye. Leave thread at this point.
3) Tie in the ribbing tinsel by lashing it to the underside of the shank for it full length. Make the thread wraps smooth and neat, as this will build a nice, even underbody for the flat tinsel body. Portion to be wound as ribbing should extend back beyond the bend.
4) At the bend, tie in the flat silver tinsel on the near side of the shank so that the excess extends beyond bend on the same horizontal plane as the shank. Smoothly wind the tying thread forward to about one and a half hook eye widths behind eye. Pull the flat tinsel up and over the shank, creating a fold at the bend, and wind forward in touch wraps to the thread. Tie off and clip excess.
5) Counterwrap the oval tinsel ribbing in an open spiral to the thread. Tie off and clip excess. Cover any exposed ends with the thread and build a smooth thread base in the head area for the wing. You should have about two hook eye widths behind the eye in which to tie in the wing.
6) Clip a bundle of calf tail equal to half a matchstick and remove any very short fibers, but do not align the tips. Tie in at the middle of the head area on top of the shank, with the very tip of the bundle estend to the tip of the tail. Clip the butt ends at an angle, cement, then cover smoothly with the thread.
7) Clip a bundle of squirrel tail equal to a matchstick in diameter. Align the tips in a stacker and tie in directly on top of the calf tail, with the tips extend just beyond the tip of the tail (up to half a hook gap). Trim the butt end at an angle or in "steps", cement well, then cover with thread.
8) Build up the head with the tying thread, whip finish and cement. When the cement has dried, you can apply Loon's Hard Head in black for a neat, shiny head.