Lefty Kreh, the internationally known author and respected fly fisherman from Maryland, developed this pattern in the late 1950's originally for striped bass in Chesapeake Bay, VA, USA but it is now an adaptable modern classic suitable for most fish.
Lefty's Deceiver Saltwater Fly Hook size 2/0, 4, 6 - $US each
Fly Fisherman Lefty Kreh wanted to make a fly that would not foul, could be made in different colour combinations to match the local baitfish and one that could be made in different sizes. He succeeded. The Lefty's Deceiver is a style of tying designed to resemble the shape and size of various swimming baitfish but when lifted from the water it can be cast with ease like a sleek missile. The wing is attached at the tail of the hook to prevent fouling in flight. It also helps to animate the fly in the water because of its great swimming action. The collar is extend well beyond the hook shank allowing the wing feathers to undulate and giving the fly the shape of a fish. We use red flash on the beard of the fly to imitate gills. If a predator fish looks up and sees the white silvery underside of a bait fish it knows which way to attack by which end the gills are. If the gills are at the front it will attack from the rear. The wing material gives the illusion of body width without a lot of extra bulk which would make it sink. The inclusion of generous amounts of flash make the fly a more attractive and noticeable target as it glints in the sun. You cannot go wrong with this fly.
Lefty started his fly fishing addiction in 1947 when fishing guide Joe brooks introduced him to the delights of a fly rod and reel whilst fishing on the Potomic River above Washington DC, USA. When flying ants were falling on the water through exhaustion as they tried to cross the large expanse of water and failed,. Bob would cast to the little rings that appeared on the water surface and catch the rising trout. He did that about eight times. Lefty was amazed. The next day Lefty drove back to Bob's home in Baltimore, Maryland and purchased his first set of fly fishing tackle. Bob gave Lefty his first 9 o'clock to 1 o'clock casting lesson. Lefty carried on practicing and started reading up on his new hobby. Jock Scott's Guide to fly fishing was an early favourite read. It was Bob Brooks who introduced Lefty to saltwater fly fishing in 1964 by getting him a job in Miami working for Orvis. He got to met all the local guides and learn from them. He later started to act as a guide and also demonstrate casting techniques, provide fishing lessons and give talks to various groups. This is not a fly just for American waters. If you fly fish in Europe, Australia, New Zealand or South America this is a good fly to use if your target fish feeds on medium sized bait fish. Salmon, steelheads, large trout and pike will attack this beauty.
Lefty Kreh designer of the Lefty's Deceiver saltwater flyfishing streamer fly
Lefty's Deceiver catches a 15lb Ferox Trout
A Ferox trout is a very rare and beautiful fish. It is also a predator and lucky is the angler who sees one, never mind catches one. They are also big -5lb to 15lb is quite normal. Some 20 pounders exist in bigger waters.
A Ferox is basically a brown trout that has transcended its environment. They are found in the mountainous glacial lakes of Ireland, the Lake District of Cumbria, Scotland and Alpine Europe.
The Ferox have adapted to these food poor environments perfectly and have advanced genetically way beyond the normal brown trout. The Ferox's smaller cousin grows for between three to four years and dies around six or seven years of age. The Ferox has a different lifestyle. They grow for 10 to 14 years and live for around twenty years.
The key to their growth is their preference for feeding on the large populations of Char that inhabit glacial lakes. The presence of Char is the trigger for the existence of every ferox population. They are a predator more like a pike than a regular trout. They feed more on other fish than aquatic insect life. This predator behaviour normally kicks in when they are around three years old.
Ferox enjoy a secretive lifestyle. They have been tagged by marine scientist and their findings suggest that the Ferox spend a great deal of their time deep, certainly more than 40 feet.
However they will come up from the gloom to hunt, especially at dawn, dusk and through the night. Ferox do not seem to be particularly territorial but appear to drift on underwater currents. They congregate around particular prolific food sources, like fish farming cages. In the autumn (fall) they migrate to their spawning sites.
The best waters in Ireland for Ferox are probably Loughs Mask, Corrib, Conn and Dreg. In Scotland Loch Garry, Awe and Quoich have a good record for Ferox catches.
The fishing method used for finding Ferox trout was pioneered by the Victorians from around the 1850's and we haven't progressed massively since then. Of course today we have outboard motors, fish finders and depth sounders, better quality rods and line but we probably catch less Ferox trout than then.
Most Ferox fly fishermen hunt them in their spawning streams during the last few weeks of the trout season, when the big fish are leaving the lochs. They are particularly aggressive at this time of the year and often fall for a big, lurid brightly coloured streamer fly worked past their noses.
A team of large streamers fished very deep have worked for me in the past. My last Ferox was caught by accident. I was using a 2/0 Lefty's Deceiver to fish for pike in Ireland just off the lough bottom near a clump of weed when a 15lb Ferox took the bait. I was very very pleased. Add catching a Ferox trout to your bucket list and have a go.