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choosing right bonefish fly

Choosing The Right Bonefish Fly

Among the many fly casting challenges that exist, fishing for bonefish is by far the most demanding. Fortunately, getting the right gear can significantly increase the likelihood of success. This is especially true when it comes to choosing the right bonefish fly. Size, weight and color are three vital factors to focus on when making your selection.


In most instances, the color of the flat and the color of the fly should be similar. The idea behind this concept is simple. Bonefish prey often hide in areas that provide natural camouflage. Thus, they are usually very similar in color to the flats that they live in. Your fly will need to mimic their natural coloration as best as possible.

Light-colored flies are best for white sand flats and brown or dark tan flies should be used in muddy areas and in areas with considerable amounts of limestone. If opting to fish near turtle grass, look for a greenish hue that blends in well with these surroundings. Flies that contrast sharply with their surroundings are not likely to have the desired effect.

Weight And Size

Weight and size are two bonefish fly features that go hand in hand. Deeper water and bigger fish will invariably necessitate the use of larger, weightier flies. Given that larger flies are typically used in deeper waters, these are designed to be heavy enough to achieve optimal depth in a nominal amount of time. If fishing in shallow water, these larger options can make a lot of noise and a big splash, which could spook the fish. Thus, the weight and size of the fly should be relative to the depth of the water that you’re fishing in.

For medium-sized fish and moderately deep water, consider #2s with either small lead eyes or large bead chain eyes. For shallow water, think about using #4s with small bead chain or mono eyes. After assessing how the fish respond to some of your more mellow options, you can decide whether or not to use flies that have colorful enhancements.


You can increase the appeal of your camouflaged fly by adding in a few, colorful enhancements. These include neon spawn sacks, and sparkly or striped, rubber legs. These additions can capture more attention in waters in which the bonefish appear very aggressive, however, there also times when fish will prove more responsive to mellow and more basic designs. Thus, it helps to have a little bit of variety in color so that you can fish successfully in different colored flats as well as some variety in terms of flash. Keeping a couple of basic, mellow flies and a few flies that have attention-grabbing elements is the best way to stay prepared for all the different options while bonefishing in the Bahamas.

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