Summer flood tides in the lowcountry mean crabs in the grass for redfish. Probably the most effective fly for this scenario is a simple black & purple EP crab. Most people fishing down here this time of year and throwing some variation of this pattern. The Marsh Rabbit is my take on this summer staple and, if I’m being honest, is probably way more complex then it needs to be. Either way, this fly is super effective and can easily be tied in a variation of colors for different water clarity. It’s called the Marsh Rabbit because we’re gunna use some rabbit strips to imitate the claws.
•Size 2 jig hook
•Krystal Flash Chenille-Purple
•Large beadchain eyes (or dumbbell for the thicker grass)–black
•Thin cut zonker strips–black
•EPSparkle Brush 1”–Purple
•EP Wooly Critter Brush 0.5”–Black/Purple
•Rubber Legs–clear/Fl. Orange tipped
•Hard Mono Weed guard
Start by tying in the dumbbell eyes near the front of the hook. Be careful to leave enough room to tie in the weed guard in front of the eyes. This sometimes gets a little tricky with jig hooks, so the more room the better here.
Tie in a two inch piece of the krystal flash chenille in past the bend of the hook. You want to create a little hot spot with this that ends where the shank of the hook starts.
Now tie a small clump of the marabou on the same side of the hook you tied the bead-chain eyes on. This fly will ride hook point up, so you’re essentially putting the marabou on the underside of the hook. The marabou will help imitate the mouth/legs of the crab as it moves in the water.
Next, tie in a set of mono eyes on the top side of the hook. These should split the hook point, with one on each side. Then take two small strips of the rabbit and tie one on each side. Picture these rabbit strips as the claws of the crab, so tie these in with that in mind.
Next, tie in the EP sparkle brush and wrap it forward a bit to create a little cone. Add a couple of the rubber legs on both sides of the hook point, extending back about the same length of the rabbit strips you just tied on.
Finally, tie in the EP wooly critter brush and wrap it forward in touching wraps all the way to the bead-chain eyes. Add a weed guard and you’re all set!
The Marsh Rabbit. Too complex? Maybe, but it’s super easy to tie and it gets the job done.
Photography & Written byRyan Gallagher of
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