Thursday, January 24, 2013

Tying the Zebra Midge

    While a traditional Zebra Midge has no collar, its close, flamboyant, and just as accomplished cousin, the Disco Midge does--the pattern below is a hybrid.  The Zebra Midge's segmented body is an imitation of that of a black midge pupa,  a very simple and easy thing to feign.  Likewise, this fly is extremely simple.  The Disco Midge is tied with a collar, and is dressed as a prep amongst its earthy brethren.  Both are favorites of anglers in the winter months, and the word on the stream is that Brookies don't mind a little inbreeding between meal options.

*My material choices are by no means standard or official*

Photo by Matt Reilly

Hook:        #14-32 (yes, 32) Daiichi Scud
Head:        3/32" Gold Tungsten Bead
Thread:     6/0 Black
Rib:           Fine silver, brass, or copper wire
Collar:       Black dubbing


  1. Slide a gold bead onto the hook and to the eye.
  2. Start the thread behind the head, and snip off a 5" length of wire.
  3. Fold over a very short piece of wire at one end, and slip into the gap behind the head--this will help in reducing the bead's wiggle room on the hook shank.  Tie down with minimal wraps of thread.
  4. Since the thread is the only body material here, be minimal in wrapping.  Wrap tightly through the bend of the hook until it begins to straighten out, securing the wire along the way.
  5. With the wire at the end of the body, wrap the thread back to the base of the head, and follow with uniformly-spaced wraps of wire.  Tie off behind the head.
  6. Wax a short length of thread, and spin on a pinch of black dubbing.  Form into a tight collar with a few wraps.
  7. With the dubbing spent, whip finish behind the bead, apply head cement, and add to your fly box.

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