Published Jan 14. 2010

The Fluff

Fish are stupid - they must be to take this simple and efficient pattern

Silver hunter - A fish that will definitely go for a Fluff - a bright sea trout
The Fluff - A wet Fluff fly on a newly caught fish.
The author - With a very decent sea trout
Sea trout

How simple can you tie a fly – and still catch fish? History has shown us lots of examples – even a “bare hook nymph”. And for seatrout we have the Copperbully here in Denmark. And you can find many other patterns with few or only one material.
The Fluff is also rather simple, and actually started out as a kind of joke about the stupidity of fish.

You can catch fish on a hook with a little dubbing. Why make simple things complicated, when fish are more stupid than we can even imagine?

Lots of flies take a long time to tie, because the patterns are far too detailed. Fish won’t notice, and the time can be used better at the water, fishing. So why not make a “Fluff” fly, the name referring to the piece of yarn often used for casting practice.

Black Fluff - Black with a stroke of peacock is always a good color
Olive Fluff - Olive and a streak of flash in the tail could imitate both a small baitfish and a shrimp
Copper Fluff - Like an elongated Copper Bully
Pink Fluff - Pink is a classical sea trout color
White Fluff - White is a universal color. Shrimp? Baitfish? Mysid? Whatever?
All colors

The fly we tied that day (and have tied in the same way since then), is made with a blend of SLF (Synthetic Living Fiber) and a little flash – making the fly dusty greenish – just like a little baitfish, the sand eel, that is one of the favorite “meals” of the Danish seatrout as well as many other predatory fish around the world.
The material is dubbed on the tread or wound in a dubbing loop. Tie in and whipfinish – and that’s it.

Per's fly box - Very typical sea trout fly box. Hackle flies - and the fluff
A keeper - A very good Danish sea trout has bitten the dust... and the Fluff
You can run... - ...but you can't hide. Not even behind a trout!
Variations - The Fluff can be tied in any color you want
Weed - Impressions from the Baltic coast
Fluffy impressions

And best of all is, that the fly is very efficient. In the springtime it is on my leader most of the time – and when I retrieve it quickly, I’m sure, that the fish will bite hard and almost swallow the fly.

Fish are stupid…



This fly made my fishing trip! Tied a Tan-coloured fluff with STF and a dubbed butt of black hair (to imitate shrimp's eyes/head) and the fish loved it. I like the stf-dubbing's shimmering effect in the water. Thanks for the pattern.

Hi Eelke. I'm sure, you can buy STF, when you come to Denmark - or in a Danish webshop, that can send the material to you in the Netherlands. The best Fluff is made of a blend of colors tan, gray olive, light olive and a little olive + a little flash (green/gold). You can mail me for further information. Per

I can't buy the Synthetic Translucent Fibre in the Netherlands. Is normal dubbing also possible?



I agree that our fly's have become overboard. I think there are flies for fishing and flies for hobby (consuming time, like that Canadian winter.) I enjoy taking my time at the vise, never wanted to be a production tyer. The average tier like myself, I cannot tie elaborate patterns anywho, so I enjoy keeping things simple.

I tied similar fly but instead of STF I used saltwater SLF dubbing in shrimp color. Same as Vanuz I attached epoxy shrimp eyes. I hope I will test it soon. I like simplicity of this pattern a lot.

The problem with this fly is that people will take a shine to it and instantly start making modifications. I'm already thinking the fly would be nice if it had a butt of a different colour. Kelly Green dubbing with a red butt, sort of like the Green Machine colours. I jest of course - your article hammers home a point: Our flies have become so elaborate that a return to the basics almost seems revolutionary. The only drawback I can see to this fly is that you could make a hundred of them in a couple of evenings - which would leave an angler a long Canadian winter with nothing to occupy his time.

No, I haven't tried it for mullet - only trout and garfish. In both cases it has been very efficient.

Have you tried this fly for mullet?

vanuz's picture

I have used a simmilar fly just adding a pair of shrimp eyes. Works fine. Simple. Yet it cuts the tying time to a minimum, which works for me also.

I have to correct myself. The material used for the Fluff isn't SLF - but STF (Synthetic Translucent Fibre). Sorry - sometimes not only fish are stupid :-)

And it works!!!!

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