This latest fly is based on an earlier marabou tailed damsel nymph that was weighted down with lead wire. By using the latest tungsten weave material the new version is not only slimmer but sinks much faster. This has applications in both river and still water fishing. It certainly makes stalking much easier and fished with a long leader, is an excellent fly for when fish are feeding lower down in the water.

This is a fly for the year 2000 and as such has not had a long period of field tests. However results with the prototypes were very good. The leaded version has accounted for some excellent brownie and rainbows.

I used the leaded version at Dever Springs and was delighted with the results. I started off fishing with a 9ft A.F.T.M. 6 rod with a weight forward floater to fish a size 10 long shanked leaded marabou-tailed damsel nymph. As I pulled it along in front of me, I could see how the marabou tail added life to the nymph. I was most impressed with both its appearance and action which was most lifelike. Naturally I knew the proof of any pudding was in its eating and had to test out the fly to see if it worked.

I moved down to fish the inlet of the bottom lake. I wanted to fish deep down in the clear water so decided to fish the nymph with a 13ft leader using a very slow retrieve. I spent some time looking around the swim using my Polaroid glasses. I could see some good fish patrolling between the crease in the flow and the reeds on the bottom bank. I made several casts allowing different sinking times before attempting to slowly retrieve. I did not have a pull until I had allowed a full 25 seconds for the leaded nymph to sink. This was just a slight tightening up of the last few inches of fly line but as I struck I made contact and was soon playing a 61b 10 oz rainbow that was in prime condition.

As I fished on, I cursed the lost time waiting for the nymph to sink. Tugsten weighted flies were not available then but I would bet this new fly would have out-fished the leaded version. I continued to fish and about an hour later I had another take. This was much more positive take and as I struck I knew I was in to a big fish. It certainly put up a good fight. As I landed it I was amazed at its excellent condition and perfect fins. It was weighed at 11lb 2oz. I continued to fish on taking another rainbow of 71b 14oz and a brown trout of 51b 13oz to complete the four fish limit by late afternoon. It was a terrific days sport.

TYING the tungsten marabou-tailed damsel nymph.


Long shank size 10 hook, Olive tying thread, Tungsten polymer sheet, Olive marabou, Olive seals fur, Dyed lime-green duck wing quill fibres, English partridge. Neck hackle dyed lime green.


1. Tie in strip of tungsten sheet about 2mm wide and wind on to form thorax.
2. Tie in marabou tail and ribbing thread. Then dub on seals fur to tying thread and wind to form body. Take ribbing in even turns and tie off just before eye of hook.
3. Tie in wing case of dyed lime-green duck quill and dub on seals fur. Then wind on seals fur to form the thorax. Next tie in an English partridge neck hackle dyed lime-green. Wind on two turns and secure. Take the wing case over hackle and tie off.
4. Shows the completed fly.

Further details or finished fly can be obtained from Lee. EMAIL