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Peterson’s Spawning Shrimp Step-by-Step:
When winter finally arrives each year in south Louisiana, my attention undoubtedly turns to the marsh. It is a time of year when the reds are thick, the water is clear and, if you time the weather just right, the sight fishing is unbeatable.
Large Kwan flies and Redfish Ritalin variants become the go to flies as most anglers set their sights on bull reds. However, presumably because I learned to fish the marsh with a 7wt, I’ve always preferred more minute offerings when the waters begin to cool. And, while small baitfish patterns certainly fit the bill, I’ve developed a fondness for shrimp imitations under these conditions.
Of these, the simple EP Shrimp has become my favorite. However, I find myself constantly searching for a worthy successor. In most cases, that search sends me down a rabbit hole leading to shallow tropical flats as such delicate patterns are more often reserved for bonefish and permit anglers. Still in the clear, shallow waters of the winter marsh, such patterns warrant a place in every anglers box. Such is my my hope for this week’s pattern: Peterson’s Spawning Shrimp.
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Peterson’s Spawning Shrimp Step-by-Step Tying Instructions:
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Tips and Tricks
- Sizing – While I’ve tied the above example on a #2, don’t be afraid to go small. I’ve caught redfish to 28″ on shrimp patterns tied as small as #6 or #8 in winters past.
- Substitutions – Just a quick note on substitutions. While this pattern remains true to the original recipe in most regards, the craft fur “tail” may be considered a substitution. Searching the internet, I have consistently stumbled across three recipes. The only variation in any is with regards to this “tail.” Some call for Craft Fur as shown. Others substitute Antron Yarn or EP Fibers instead. Each no doubt affects the profile and action to some degree, so be sure to experiment if you have all three available.
- Weight – Beyond the substitutions discussed above, Bead Chain versus Dumbbell Eyes needs to be a primary consideration when tying this pattern. Both, in conjunction with the rabbit fur wing, are sufficiently heavy to orient the fly hook point up. However, each affects both sink rate and action. Take time to consider both depth and desired action when selecting between the two. The video below provides a brief glimpse of action imparted by the bead chain version tied above.
Proof of Concept
Peterson’s spawning shrimp is a new addition to my marsh box and, as of this posting, remains unproven. However, with a few scheduled visits to the marsh slated for late November, that should change before too long.
Species Caught on the Peterson’s Spawning Shrimp to Date:
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