Another easy-to-tie, super versatile pattern from Jason and Gary Borger. Enjoy. -TR
Excerpts from “Fishing the Film” by Gary A. Borger (with additional photos by Gary A. Borger):
The Collared Leech has caught every type of fish that I’ve tossed it at, in sizes from 8 to 2/0, and beyond. Add different color schemes and the fly can be varied in at least a hundred directions. The acoustic aspect of the collar came into play one time when Jason and I were fishing for smaller tarpon. I saw two fish roll about 90 feet away and unloaded a cast that dropped the fly about 15 feet in front of their position. As soon as the Collared Leech landed, I gave it one long strip. Immediately one of the tarpon rushed forward, slashed the fly just under the film, and jumped. I’d say that it was the sound of the fly as much as anything that pulled the fish in so fast.
_Another benefit: It’s really easy to tie!
Tail: None or any length of marabou, soft hair, flash, rubber skirting, etc.
Body: Whatever you want. I often tie it with heavy dubbing spun in a loop. I also really like flash chenilles, marabou, yarns, and dubbings with and without flash enhancements. Sometimes, for a “Down and Dirty” version, I leave off both the tail and body and use just the collar. You’d be surprised how well these bare-bones flies work.
Collar: Any length you want. Typically I use longer fibers of marabou, FoxxFurr, and a wide variety of long natural furs. I also add flash materials, rubber legs, etc., to the collar. Insert the materials in a spinning loop, twist it tight to make a “3-D” hackle, and wind it on. Apply the collar as lightly or as heavily as you want. The heavier the collar, the more water the fly will push.
Head: Optional. I will sometimes add a head of coarse dubbing spun in a loop to give the fly a bit more ability to “push” water and to give it a more “minnow like” form (probably more for my benefit than for its attractiveness to the fish).
Tying sequence (using FoxxFurr):
1. Tie in the tail, make a spinning look, add chopped FoxxFurr dubbing, spin the loop tight.
2. Wrap the body, leaving sufficient room for the collar. Make another spinning loop andinsert black FoxxFurr with purple LiquiFlash into the loop at right angles to the thread. To get the FoxxFurr and LiquiFlash together in the loop at the same time, lay the FoxxFurr on the bench and then lay the Liquiflash piece on top of it. Pick the whole thing up and insert into the loop at one time. Keep the thread close to the butt ends of the FoxxFurr.
3. Spin the loop very tight to form a FoxxFurr/LiquiFlash, 3-D hackle.The Liquiflash is evident in the photo.
4. Wind the collar-stroke the fibers rearward after each wrap-and finish the head. Fast to tie and endlessly variable.