|Bitty Black Bug|
For some reason, though, when I am fishing with nymphs, matching the underwater "hatch" is not usually something I think about. I have my standard set of nymphs that I go through, all of which are about the same size, with about the same sized bead. I rarely fish any nymph smaller than a 14, even though I know there are a ton of insects smaller than that in any given trout stream.
Pretty much the only nymph I use in a smaller size is my Bitty Black Bug, also known as the B3 for short, or the BuBBa for not-quite-as-short. I tie it in a size 18, and I think it looks a lot like almost every small insect in the water. It's dark, it kind of has the appearance of a mayfly nymph, but it could easily pass as a midge larva or any other small insect. And it's the only nymph I fish that has a glass bead instead of a brass bead. I don't know if the glass bead looks like a tiny air bubble or what, but it has proven very effective more times than I can remember. I used this fly to catch the largest whitefish of my life out in Colorado several years ago. It was also the only whitefish of my life, but it was about 17", so I call it the largest instead of the only, in the rare times that I talk about it...
Let's learn how to tie the Bitty Black Bug!
Bitty Black Bug Pattern Recipe
Hook: Daiichi 1560 or similar 1X long nymph hook, size 18
Thread: Black 8/0
Bead: Small clear glass bead, size 11/0
Tail: Webby black hackle fibers
Abdomen: Black wire
Thorax: Peacock Ice Dub