Doug's Snook Destroyer
The Destroyer Series was first designed in 2005 or 2006 as a snook fly for the back country of the Everglades National Park. We needed a fly that was easy to cast, light on the landing, would hover in the water column, and have terrific movement in the water even while not being stripped.
While I was fishing in Alaska in 2004, I found a shop that sold Arctic furs and sold a magnificent fur in pure white called Finnish Raccoon. I fell in love with the material, it had fibers as long as four inches, was dense with under fur and long guard hair, and would shed water almost like Otter. I shared this material with the other guys in our group and Doug Mayer came up with the incredibly simple fly that he wanted to call “Doug’s Forty Snook Fly” because he had caught 40 snook on a single fly one day before he broke it off for not changing the leader. We renamed it “Doug’s Snook Destroyer “or simply “Doug’s Destroyer”.
Another member of our group, Saltwater Flytyers, developed a fly tied out of some fur we had dyed in olive. Trevor Luce tied a fly for laid up tarpon that normally were very hard to take on anything, let alone a fly. Trevor’s Green Hornet would hang in the column just in the face of the tarpon, moving like marabou, undulating and tantalizing the fish until it could not resist and eat the fly.
The key to the series is the Finnish Raccoon which moves in water like something alive even while still, yet is a hundred times more durable than marabou, it also comes out of the water almost dry with one false cast. With the addition of chartreuse, black, purple, yellow, orange, and natural brindle colors, which we import from Finland, we now have a fly that catches a wide range of species that has not found its limits.
To purchase any of the materials listed for this fly, click on the item in the Materials list below.
- Hook: SL12S 1/0, 2/0
- Tail: White Finnish Raccoon
- Collar: Red Estaz Grande
- Head: EP Pearl Shrimp Dub Brush
- Eyes: Large Black Mono
- Weed Guard: 20# Mason Hard Mono
1. Set SL12S 1/0 hook in vise. Wrap thread from ¼” behind eye of hook to just past the bend and back to the point of the hook.
2. Cement and tie in the tail securely. Wrap the thread back to the point of the hook.
3. To aid in preventing fouling, post the tail. Wrap the thread around the base of the tail about six turns. Return the thread over the point of the hook.
3A. Detail view of how the tail should look at the end of step 3.
4. Note at this step the eyes have been crossed in and cemented, returning the thread ready to tie in the Estaz. Use cement liberally throughout.
5. Make three wraps of the Estaz forward and tie off.
6. Tie in the Enrico Puglisi Brush material securely and watch the sharp end of the steel wire to avoid cutting the thread or the tier. Advance the thread to just in front of the eyes.
7. Palmer the brush forward wrapping behind, across and in front the eyes. Secure the wire and cut with nippers. Burnish the sharp end of the brush.
8. Using 20# Mason Hard Mono to make a double weedguard. Form nice head, cement, and trim legs of the weedguard. Apply head finish.
Below are some of the variations of the "Destroyer" patterns that have evolved over time.
#001 SWFT Doug's Destroyer
#002 SWFT Trevor's Green Hornet Light
#003 SWFT Rust/Natural Destroyer
#004 SWFT Trevor's Green Horner Dark
#006 SWFT Chartreuse Destroyer
#007 SWFT Candy Corn Destroyer
#020 SWFT Purple/Black Destroyer
#021 SWFT Trout Destroyer