I have to confess that my fly fishing over the years has been very limited in terms of what flies I use. I have a theory (though not mine) that if the fish aren’t biting you are wasting your time by changing your flies all the time. The fish are either feeding or they are not. This is probably true 99 % of the time in the streams that i fish. I will change from dry fly to wet fly and from a big nymph to a small nymph, but my fly box is very limited in fly selection. It makes life simple for me on the river, no fiddling around and changing flies every 10 minutes. I fish what I know works, and I trust my presentation which I reckon is usually pretty decent. No frills no fuss. I have about 5 dry flies in my box although I seldom use more than one or two, and I have a a few nymphs in various sizes and in blacks and browns. That’s it, literally 8 different flies of which I can almost guarantee you that only 2 or 3 will be used on a given day.
I now have a new addition to my box, the Bungezi. Bungezi means Beetle in Zulu which our maid Siselia suggested I call it. I must confess that I had never ever tied a beetle pattern until a few weeks ago. I have never really liked those foam beetles much, I know they work but I like using natural materials where possible.
This next weekend I will probably be fishing in Lesotho for a day on a “business trip”. I will be fishing for Yellows and Trout in the Tsoelike River. The river has a lot of willow trees along its banks and there is a green beetle that lives in the trees that the trout love. It’s a bit smaller than my Bungezi but I like my flies to be a bit bigger than the natural. I have never fished for Yellows in the Tsoelike but they must be there in the summer and I know Yellows love a beetle; so that got me thinking about tying up my own beetle pattern.
This was the result of much day dreaming and tying in my head. Life has changed quite a bit over the last few months and its not as easy just to tie flies whenever I want. It’s surprising how you can almost design a fly completely in your mind, and all it takes is a few hours behind the vice and daydreams become reality! Today I had a few hours of time, and the result was very pleasing. I would love to try some more colours, like black and dark brown, but for now I am short of materials so olive and light brown will have to do.
Here follows the Bungezi Step by Step: