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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Mousey McMouseface

Feed Rodents to Your Fish

Gimme some cheese!


Several years ago when I lived a quarter mile from an amazing bass fishery I found myself creating all kinds of topwater patterns to chase them with.  I had all of the typical bass colors and variations of poppers, divers, and about every gaudy thing that my crazy mind could think of.  When the going got tough and the bass didn't want to play, I always tied on a natural colored mouse pattern and they always ate it.  No flash, no fancy moving parts, just super buggy fishiness.  That mouse consisted of rabbit strips for a tail, wrapped rabbit for the body, foam for the belly, and foam for the back...  I can't quite remember how it was put together, but it was a buggy buggy fly.  

Sam Mouser 1
Like many mouse patterns, this one was kind of plagued with a tail that always fouled, and the lack of a stinger hook that let the tail nippers get away without a lip piercing.  I have dabbled with mouse patterns off and on for a long time. and our current mouse pattern, the Complex Twist Mouse, has proven to be very effective.  The fouling tail problem was 100% solved with that fly, but there still wasn't a stinger...  I actually think that if a mouse pattern is about 3.5" or smaller (total length) it really doesn't need a stinger because it's small enough for even a window shopper to gulp down.  

The Complex Twist Mouse is actually responsible for one of the most memorable mouse eats that I have seen this summer.  Curtis and I were fishing with our good friend Justin, and it was a prototypical streamer day.  Rain all day, a bit of hail, cooler than normal temps, you know, time to eat steaks!  The fish were very aggressively eating streamers in the first 6 to 12 inches of the water column, so I decided to throw on the Complex Twist Mouse.  First cast, and a brown trout about backflipped over it.  He wasn't the biggest fish, but it left us all just kind of looking at each other dumbfounded.  Time to get on the mouse game again.
Sam Mouser 2

Lots of times I'll get the bug to start tinkering with a fly when I get a request from someone who I know will thoroughly test my patterns.  Cortney Boice came to me several months ago and let me know that they were going to be mousing quite a bit, and that he was interested in getting a few tester patterns.  The first round it was the Complex Twist Mouse, the second round was a bigger Complex Twist Mouse with a stinger, the third round it was a fly pretty similar to Mousey McMouseface, and then Sam Parkinson added his input.  "The stinger needs to be right behind the tip of the tail..." No biggie right?  Anyway, Cort and Sam tested and helped dial in what we think is a very very effective mouse pattern that swims great and can hook the tail nippers.  I have said this a lot in the past, but if you are a fly designer, and you are truly looking to maximize a pattern, find anglers who will fish your flies hard and tell you if they suck.  I have a core group of guys who are really really good at this.  

Sam Mouser 3

Check out the video to see how the fly is segmented and how to make cool eyes with a durable head coating.  Resin is definitely not the answer to coat soft foam popper heads, especially if they are colored with markers.  In fact, check out THIS VIDEO where we compared some popular UV resins against Loon Soft Head.  As for Mousey McMouseface, check out Sam's images to help you determine whether or not it's effective.  

~ Cheech


Material Lists

***You will need to have 50# braided fishing line for this fly.  It's readily available anywhere that sells fishing gear.  Also, feel free to use whatever colors of markers you see fit.  I made some general guidelines on some of the recipes.***

Other tools from the tutorial:
Loon Gator Grip Dubbing Spinner     
Petitjean Magic Tool Clip Set - Standard     
Cautery High Temp Finishing Tool     
Zap-a-Gap Brush-On Super Glue     

Gray/Brown (Medium Size)

Add to Cart   View in store

Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 1/0 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Stinger: Daiichi 2557 Intruder Trailer Hook - 4     
Tail: Pine Squirrel Zonkers - Gray, Natural     
Shank1: Articulated Fish Spines - 15mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank2: Articulated Fish Spines - 20mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Body: Rabbit Zonker Strips - Grizzly     
Legs: Silicone Flutter Legs - Tan     
Over Body: Fly Tying Foam - 6mm - Black     
Head: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - White - Medium     
Marker 1: Copic Sketch Marker - Gray     
Marker 2: Chartpak Fly Tying Markers - Desert Tan (Dark Tan)     
Marker 3: Chartpak Fly Tying Markers - Black     
Eyes: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     


Albino (Medium Size)
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Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 1/0 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - White - 100 Denier     
Stinger: Daiichi 2557 Intruder Trailer Hook - 4     
Tail: Micro Rabbit Strips - White     
Shank1: Articulated Fish Spines - 15mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank2: Articulated Fish Spines - 20mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Body: Rabbit Zonker Strips - White     
Legs: Silicone Flutter Legs - White     
Over Body: Fly Tying Foam - 6mm - White     
Head: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - White - Medium     
Eyes: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     
Marker 1: Copic Sketch Marker - Red     


Dark Gray/Black (Medium Size)

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Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 1/0 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Stinger: Daiichi 2557 Intruder Trailer Hook - 4     
Tail: Micro Pulsator Rabbit Strips - Black Barred Grizzly     
Shank1: Articulated Fish Spines - 15mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank2: Articulated Fish Spines - 20mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Body: Rabbit Zonker Strips - Charcoal     
Legs: Silicone Flutter Legs - Black     
Over Body: Fly Tying Foam - 6mm - Black     
Head: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - Black - Medium     
Eyes: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     


*** For the micro size, there is no stinger hook and only one additional shank***

Gray/Brown (Micro Size)
Add to Cart   View in store
Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 4 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Tail/Body: Pine Squirrel Zonkers - Gray, Natural     
Shank: Articulated Fish Spines - 10mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Legs: Silicone Flutter Legs - Tan     
Over Body: Rainy's Evazote Foam - Black - 1/8"     
Head: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - White - Extra Small     
Eyes: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     


Albino (Micro Size)
Add to Cart   View in store
Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 4 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Tail/Body: Micro Rabbit Strips - White     
Shank: Articulated Fish Spines - 10mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Legs: Silicone Flutter Legs - White     
Over Body: Rainy's Evazote Foam - White - 1/8"     
Head: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - White - Extra Small     
Eyes: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     

Black (Micro Size)
Add to Cart   View in store
Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 4 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Tail/Body: Pine Squirrel Zonkers - Black     
Shank: Articulated Fish Spines - 10mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Legs: Silicone Flutter Legs - Black     
Over Body: Rainy's Evazote Foam - Black - 1/8"     
Head: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - Black - Extra Small     
Eyes: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     


*** For the jumbo size, I use three shanks.  The back two shanks have no foam, just rabbit strip wrapped on the shank.  Also, feel free to substitute a treble hook for the stinger hook.***

Gray/Brown (Jumbo Size)
Add to Cart   View in store
Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 4 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Stinger: Daiichi 2557 Intruder Trailer Hook - 2     
Tail / Body: Rabbit Zonker Strips - Grizzly     
Shank 1: Articulated Fish Spines - 15mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank 2: Articulated Fish Spines - 20mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank 3: Articulated Fish Spines - 25mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Over Body: Fly Tying Foam - 6mm - Brown     
Over Body: Silicone Flutter Legs - Tan     
Legs: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - White - Large     
Head: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     


Albino (Jumbo Size)
Add to Cart   View in store

Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 4 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - White - 100 Denier     
Stinger: Daiichi 2557 Intruder Trailer Hook - 2     
Tail / Body: Rabbit Zonker Strips - White     
Shank 1: Articulated Fish Spines - 15mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank 2: Articulated Fish Spines - 20mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank 3: Articulated Fish Spines - 25mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Over Body: Fly Tying Foam - 6mm - White     
Over Body: Silicone Flutter Legs - White     
Legs: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - White - Large     
Head: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire     


Gray/Black (Jumbo Size)
Add to Cart   View in store

Hook: Gamakatsu B10S - 4 - 25 Pack     
Thread: Veevus GSP - Black - 100 Denier     
Stinger: Daiichi 2557 Intruder Trailer Hook - 2     
Tail / Body: Rabbit Zonker Strips - Charcoal     
Shank 1: Articulated Fish Spines - 15mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank 2: Articulated Fish Spines - 20mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Shank 3: Articulated Fish Spines - 25mm Shanks (24 pack)     
Over Body: Fly Tying Foam - 6mm - Black     
Over Body: Silicone Flutter Legs - Black     
Legs: Double Barrel Popper Bodies - Black - Large     
Head: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Thick (1/2 oz)     
Connection: Articulation Wire