This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is Vince Marinaro’s Jassid Fly.

Jassid Flies |

I met some friends for coffee last Friday. One of them, Jim Ferguson, was sharing a fly he tied recently I recognized…a Jassid. I asked him if I could take a quick picture at the table and this is the result.

Jassid Fly |

These images aren’t my best by far, but I did the best I could with the restrictions of an outdoor table and no speedlights.

The Jassids are size 16 and from the image appear to be tied with a body of peacock, black body hackle, and jungle cock nail for a wing.

This fly was developed by Vince Marinaro (1911-1986), born in Pennsylvania. He was known as the “dean of Pennsylvania’s Letort Spring Run.”

Marinaro was a corporate tax specialist after graduating with a BS from Duquesne University (1933) and Dickinson Law School (1937). But he made his mark on the fly fishing community with his research and writing.

Here are two book titles you may recognize:

Marinaro describes his new fly in A Modern Dry-Fly Code that he ties it with an underbody of “greenish-black hackle from a Flemish Giant rooster, tied in open palmer fashion along the back cut away to make a flat table for the jungle cock nail, and a wide V cut away underneath…”

An earlier version appears to be the one Jim tied, using peacock herl for the body. Marinaro states this step is unnecessary as the peacock herl soaked up water and didn’t float as well. The result using only short black hackle below the “shapely jungle cock nail or nails to form an opaque background against which the screening hackle creates an impression of depth and bulk.”

Mike Valla writes about Marinaro in chapter 29 of The Founding Flies (2013), stating the Jassid was his signature fly, imitating a nonindigenous Japanese Beetle which was found in the United States around 1916.

Another source to learn more about Marinaro is from an article in The American Fly Fisher (Spring 2000) entitled Vince Marinaro: On Point of Balance by Gordon M. Wickstom

Enjoy…go fish!

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  1. How much do you charge for your #18 Jassid fly? I’ve heard a good deal about them. We fish PA waters often. Give me your order information and tentative delivery time. Thanks

  2. The Jassid is an underrated and underused fly. I tie them in #18 and they are extremely productive any time terrestrials are about. I use real jungle cock nails and not only are they gorgeous (to the tyer), but are surprisingly hi-vis. I think most people shy away from them is because they don’t have or don’t want to buy an expensive jungle cock cape. But I used to tie a lot of steelhead and salmon flies, so I already had a cape. But, I only used the big feathers and the small ones were useless for spey flies and such. So, I’m able to make use of those small ones with patterns like the Jassid. Also, the spade feathers actually make really interesting hackle!

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