Mohair Leech


Most stillwaters have leeches, but very few north American species are blood suckers. They are naturally nocturnal, so trout don't see very many during the daytime. But when a fish spots one, it is usually interested, because a leech represents a good meal.

The head and/or front half (only) of the fly should weighted. A beadhead is optional. When retrieved, this gives the fly an up-and-down undulation that mimics the way real leeches swim.

Unlike many patterns that are called a "leech," the Mohair Leech and the very similar Mini Leech one really do resemble leeches. Most of the leeches that trout eat are only an inch or two long, and they are thin. This fly imitates them well.


Good color choices: red, bugundy, purple, black, brown, dark olive.

How to Fish

In lakes, use the count-down-and-retrieve or slow retrieve presentations. Vary the retrieve until you find what works best at the moment: slow and steady, fast, strip-and-pause, or quick, short two-inch strips. Also, a wind drift works well in lakes.

When pursued, leeches put the pedal to the metal and move pretty fast. For this reason, some anglers always retrieve their leeches fast, in the belief that a trout will see it speeding along and figure another trout is after it--thus inducing a strike response ("eat all the food you can before any fish gets it" seems to be a trout motto). There are times when this works, and times when it just spooks all the fish.

HOOK: TMC 5263, sizes 8-12


TAIL: Black marabou with a few strands of Flashabou

BODY: Black brushed mohair yarn. Pick out the long threads so the finished fly looks straggly and hairy.

WING: Black marabou with a few strands of Flashabou