Tying a Mercury Pheasant Tail

So until I get time to make a video I thought I would post up a few photos of how to tie a Mercury Pheasant Tail. You will need:

Hook: TMC 101 or Dai-Riki 310 #18-24
Bead: Extra small silver-lined glass bead
Thread: Uni 8/0 Black
Tail/abdomen: 4 Strands Pheasant Tail fibers (I use natural or red mostly)
Wing case: LargePearl Mylar Tinsel
Rib: Fine gold wire

1: Put silver-lined bead on hook and place a jam knot behind it. Run thread back to the start the curve in the hook. Take four strands of Pheasant Tail and tie in at the back with the tips of the feather making the tail and hanging two-thirds the distance of the shank off the back. I also tie in the piece of fine gold wire now.

2: Advance the four threads of Pheasant Tail forward toward the bead. Reverse rib the wire forward. Tie both down with two wraps.

3: Move the thread back a little bit and tie on the Mylar Tinsel .

4: Tie on a small amount of Peacock Herl or Peacock Eye and advance it forward a few wraps. Pull the Mylar Tinsel over the top of the Peacock and tie it down then trim the ends. Separate the legs of the Peacock into two legs on one side and two on the other. Pull two legs on one side back and do two wraps then pull the two legs on the other side back and do two wraps. Whip finish. Trim legs back about half way down the shank.

Finished side view:

Finished top view:

Remember that a good Pheasant Tail should be sparse so keep any extra bulk to a minimum.

BTW: When I was buying materials for this fly one time a guy told me to use the red Pheasant Tail when the sun was low as the wavelengths are longer and it makes the red Pheasant Tail glow. I have not tried that myself but seems reasonable.

4 thoughts on “Tying a Mercury Pheasant Tail”

    1. I tossed some 3mm gold beads on that same pattern and landed five wild fish in an hour above Belknap Springs last weekend. The red version was effective at dusk near Vida.

      Checkout the photos.

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