This is the first post in the new fly pattern section of my blog and I have dedicated it to the Dirty Pink Shrimp.
What a Fly! It may have been more obvious to pick a Black Buzzer, a Hares Ear or even a Cats Whisker, but for me the Dirty Pink Shrimp has become a “go to pattern” whenever I manage to break away from the shop for a Grayling session.
There are a ton of Pink Shrimp varieties available but the version pictured here has become my firm favourite. Not over tied, heavy enough to sink quickly and constructed on a quality barbless hook by Fulling Mill who launched their Tactical Series Flies in 2010.
It is versatile too. Give the Pink Shrimp a go by sight fishing to Grayling on chalk streams or rig up a multi fly Czech style leader for spate rivers. Mix the patterns up using this latter technique, alternating the Shrimp between droppers and you will be amazed how often this fish puller gets snaffled …. Trout love them to!
When sight fishing chalk-streams such as the Anton in Hampshire I have watched as heavily fished Grayling have staunchly refused even the most accurately positioned general nymph imitation but bolted several feet to intercept a Pink Shrimp. I have even witnessed them fighting over this fly as one fish sucks it in, spits it out and another woofs it. Exciting stuff!
Of course it is not a miracle pattern (Is there one? I hope not!) and it pays to have plenty of different sizes, weights and shades to cope with whatever your venue decides to throw your way. As with all imitative patterns aim for the most natural presentation which tends to be dead drift, although try imparting a little life to with the odd sudden strike while fishing Czech style or a smooth “induced take” lift when sight fishing clear water. Couple the Pink Shrimp with a decent quality fluorocarbon and for ultimate control try using a 10’0″ or even 11’0″ rod.