FWFF 4/2015 Fly of the Month

Elk Hair Duck Butt Weenie / aka The DBW

Conceived and Tied by Mandy Mendez

MK1_0699 MM 4x6 card


caddiCaddis Fly Hatch on Colorado’s Rio Grande River

Perfect time and place to tie on the DBW!



I have had the pleasure of knowing and fishing with Mandy Mendez for a few years now. The first time we met, that I can recall, was at a Backwoods tying session, and I was very green tyer. We were working on a Gully Worm pattern that required braiding chenille. As with most of my demo flies, I tend to struggle, and still do!  Mandy noticed this, and without hesitation showed and helped Chip May and myself the technique required. That is what Mandy is all about. She gives and shares with a great smile and enthusiasm. This month she shares her favorite Caddis fly pattern.

To quote Mandy, “My inspiration to develop this pattern was that I loved fishing an Elk Hair Caddis, but hated the amount of floatant I had to use to keep it riding high in the water. I LOVE to use CDC in many of my flies because of the air trapping ability and natural floatation properties with minimal floatant use. Adding a thin foam underbody with a bit of the foam sticking past the fly imitates an egg laying Caddis and adds a bit more floatation.” CDC is known for its bugginess and just plain fish appeal. “This fly makes for an excellent top water pattern and ‘sharp indicator’ when fished in tandem with another fly.”  Here is Mandy’s material list for tying up her DBW.

Hook: Standard dry in sizes to match the local hatch. Most common are # 12 – 18.

Thread:  70 or 140 with the ability to be split for forming a dubbing loop. GSP or Ultra Thread are the two most available.  Color to match your CDC.

Dubbing: CDC in color of your choice. (tan, black, olive )

Body: Strip of 2mm tying foam. (bright green, red, or CDC color match) .

Wing: Elk (bull, cow, yearling), deer body, or moose body hair.  Natural, tan, bleached, black.

Tools: Pettijean Magic Tool or small bulldog clip to trap CDC for forming dubbing.  Hair stacker.

Mandy’s Tying tip: Don’t get overly frustrated with the hair wing. The fish don’t mind if it’s ugly!


Mandy was our featured tyer at the Fort Worth Fly Fishers April Meeting. I hope you stopped by the fly bench and saw how Mandy splits thread and ties her signature pattern.

—Mark Kolanowski

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