The colorful flies used to catch tarpon (gallery)

  • Thu Sep 6th, 2012 5:13pm
  • Sports

By Mike Benbow, For The Herald

Six fly fishermen from the Puget Sound area recently went to Mexico in August to fish for tarpon — giant ones that can reach 200 pounds and babies from between 10 to 30 pounds.

Watch for a story Sunday about local fisherman taking a trip to fish for tarpon in Mexico.

Tarpon feed on a variety of things. In Mexico, it’s mostly anchovies, crab and shrimp.

Flies for tarpon can be made to look like those items, but they’re often not intended to copy real food. Many of the flies are just designed with bright colors so they stand out from the crowd, attracting the fish. Typically they¹re made with chicken or turkey feathers or with strips of dyed rabbit hair that move as the fly is pulled through the water to make it look like a living thing.

Some of the most effective flies in Mexico are red and black variations of a fly called Black Death. The flies are usually about three to five inches long.

Click here to see some flies commonly used to fish for tarpon.