Tying a CDC Ant Fly
Welcome to another quick fly tying session! In this article, we will guide you through the process of tying a CDC (Cul de Canard) Ant fly. This fly is a simple yet effective pattern that can be used to imitate ants on the water's surface. Whether you're a seasoned fly tyer or just getting started, this pattern is a great addition to your repertoire.
Before we dive into the tying process, let's take a look at the materials you'll need for this fly:
- Hook: Size 14 hook
- Thread: UTC 70 in golden brown
- Foam: A strip of foam, cut to about an inch in length
- Dubbing: A small amount of dubbing for the body
- CDC Plume: A CDC feather for the wing
- Hackle: A long strip of reddish-brown hackle
1. Securing the Foam
Start by attaching your thread just behind the eye of the hook. Leave it hanging right around the barb area. Now, take the strip of foam, which you've cut to a smaller size, and trim a point at one end. Lay this pointed end on the near side of the hook and secure it with a couple of loose wraps. Make sure the foam is evenly distributed on both sides of the hook.
2. Creating the Body
Move your thread back to the desired position for the body, which should be closer to the hook's eye. Take a pinch of dubbing and create a dubbing noodle on your thread. Wrap the dubbing to form a slightly bulky body, especially in the back portion of the fly. This will help create the ant's body shape.
3. Securing the Foam Again
Now, fold the foam strip over the body you've created and secure it with a couple of wraps. Be cautious not to pull too tight as you might cut through the foam with the fine thread. Use open spiral wraps with intermittent pressure to trap the foam down to the hook's eye. Smooth out the area with additional wraps.
4. Creating the Head
Move your thread to the front of the foam, where you want to create the head of the ant. Use about half the amount of dubbing as you did for the body and make a smaller dubbing noodle. Wrap it to form the head of the ant.
5. Adding CDC Plume
Prepare a CDC plume by stroking the fibers forward to create a fluffy wing. Measure it to hang off the back of the fly, approximately the length of a hook gap. Secure the CDC plume in the middle of the hook with thread wraps. Trim the excess.
6. Adding Hackle
Prepare the hackle by stripping off a few fibers from the butt end, exposing the stem. Tie in the hackle with the underside facing down the fly. Palmer the hackle forward to fill in the space between the body and the CDC wing.
Wrap your thread behind and in front of the hackle to secure it. Trim any stray hackle fibers. Trim the excess foam and create a small head with a whip finish.
8. Final Trimming
Trim any remaining stray hackle fibers below the hook point. This ensures that the fly sits correctly on the water's surface.
Congratulations! You've successfully tied a CDC Ant fly. This pattern is versatile and can be effective in various fishing situations. Experiment with different sizes and colors to match the natural ants in your area. Happy fly tying, and may your next fishing adventure be a successful one!