Mini Hammnerhead Booby Nymph
The Booby Nymph was a creation devised by Gordon Fraser.
I have read, however, that he wishes he hadn't invented the fly
because of people fishing it stationary, as one would a
Don't let the name mislead you - this fly is more of a Lure Attracter
pattern than a Nymph and works best in all the flourescent bright
colours under the sun. I have heard tale of people catching fish on
drab nymphal-type patterns. I have even tried it myself, but with
no success. Fishing correctly, I believe that this fly is a stroke of
genius and will catch fish when nothing else will.
The fly shown here is just an example and works in the UK. Change
tail colours, hook sizes, tail lengths (for maximum mobility) and even
body materials to suit the tastes of your quarry. For example,
try purple and pink for Steelheads, but keep them bright! Also you
could stick various eyes on to the plastazote eyes to create small
Hooks: Kamasan B170, size 12 (short shank, medium
This fly can be fished on Intermediate lines or
stripped across the top like a Muddler, but it is most
at home on a hi-density line (ultra fast sinking) with a
short leader, i.e. 2 or 3 feet, inched across the bottom
on a dead slow figure of eight retrieve.
Thread: Hot orange, size 6/0.
Tail: White Maribou.
Body: Flourescent Lime Green Estaz (micro).
Eye diameter: 6mm.
Eyes: Yellow Plastazote.
Step 1 - Making the eyes:
1. Acquire a piece of metal tubing, such as
a short section of a car aerial, parker pen or brass
model tubing ( a car aerial is best as different
diameters can be achieved).
2. Take your piece of tubing (2 or 3 inches long)
and insert it into a battery gun or drill. (This can be done
manually but takes longer.)
3. Lay a piece of emery paper on your bench and
sharpen the tubing around the edge by rotating it over
the emery paper at an angle of about 45 degrees.
4. Remove tubing from gun and insert a pair of old
scissors inside tube to remove the burr.
5. Twist you new cutter into a block of plastazote to
produce small tube-shaped eyes.
1. Cut your eyes to length (on the pattern shown,
about 12mm) and figure-eight them on to the hook as you
would bead chain. Position the vice to point towards you
to make things easier for yourself.
2. Wind the thread to the bend of the hook and
attach the tail, in this case about 1 inch long, and secure
all the way up to the eye. Return your thread to the bend.
3. Attach a piece of Estaz or Chenille and wind this
up to the eyes and finish with a whip-finish.
Fishing the Fly:
It fishes best on British reservoirs and lochs for Rainbow
trout. It is at it's most effective when the weather is either
very hot or very cold, subsequently causing the fish to hit
the bottom and skulk in the most comfortable layer of
When confronted with abnormal temperatures the fish are
often lethargic and will not chase anything that's moving
too fast. This is the beauty of the Booby.
Its limits are not confined to reservoir fishing. Apparently
salmon are taken on the Booby. Again, the fly fishes deep
and slow but overcomes the problem of snagging on a rocky
bottom due to its bouyancy.
The fly does not always perform best with a slow figure of
eight however. It can be deadly when given a rapid figure of
eight and left for a second to return to its original plain in the
water. One simply has to experiment with retrieves as there
are too many variations jumping into my head at this minute
to possibly list! Also experiment with line densities and
There are drawbacks using the Booby Nymph. Here in the UK
the Booby Nymph is banned on every catch and release fishery
for the simple reason that it is often sucked in deeply, resulting in
badly, deeply-hooked fish. Even with barbless hooks the Booby
would be difficult to remove without causing stress or damage to
the fish - so be warned.
I asked my Chat Room friend Mike Connor, "Mike do you ever fish Boobies?"
He replied, "Occassionally in stocked rainbow waters when I have newbies along
and have to catch a couple of the bloody things. Works every time.
The Boobies are deadly for stocked rainbows in still waters. You
can fill a bucket in double-quick time. Not really my idea of fishing
though. As a technique it is a bit boring really, but catches plenty of
fish." ~ Dave Bullen