How To Tie A Blue Crab Fly

This particular Crab Pattern is made to look like a Blue Crab. Blue Crabs are an irresistible bite to many of my favorite fish. Permit, Bonefish, Redfish, Tarpon... I could name more, but the fact remains, blue crabs catch fish. This blue crab fly can be tied big or small, weighted heavily or not, the hardest part is getting it right to the fish, and when you do, hang on!

~ Click any image to enlarge ~

Materials List:

I like to use a Gamakatsu SL12S size 2 for my crab flies.  This hook is
strong and very sticky.  Most appropriately sized saltwater hooks will do.

This particular crab pattern is tied with tan thread.  I suggest using 
 something light colored that you can change with a marker later.
Click here to buy Fly Tying Thread

Most crab fly patterns use weighed eyes to get down to the fish right away.
This crab pattern is tied with medium weight eyes.
Click here to buy Weighted Eyes

This fly calls for a hackle feather tail.  I use two grizzly hackles
splayed out "Keys Style" for the tail of the fly.
Click to buy Crab Tying Feathers

I used dyed marabou in the tail of the fly as well.  This part of the fly
can be tied with any sort of "fluff" I just happen to like this material.
Click to buy Fly Tying Fluff

Mono eyes are made easily with a little bit of heavy mono and a lighter.  
With a little bit of practice, you will be making mono eyes like a pro.

 The body of this crab fly is made with Synthetic Fly Tying Fibers. 
The most popular is EP Fibers.  I use tan for a Blue Crab Fly.

No crab fly is complete without wiggly legs.  I like to use rubber 
legs that are a similar color to what i am trying to imitate.

This Blue Crab Fly takes life when you hit it with a marker.  
I am sure to always use a permanent marker when I color my crab flies.

~ Click any image to enlarge ~

Step By Step: How to tie a Blue Crab Fly

Step 1:
Bend the eye of your hook

Step 2:
Tie on your dumbbell eyes and wrap your thread back.

Step 3:
Tie on your tail.

Step 4:
Tie on mono eyes

(Click Here for a short video on how to make mono eyes)

Step 5:
Tie on a tuft of marabou.

Step 6:
Tie on your first body segment.

Step 7:
Tie on your first set of legs.

Step 8:
Tie on your second body segment.

Step 9:
Tie on your second set of legs.

Step 10:
Tie on your third body segment.

Step 11:
Tie on your third and final set of legs.

Step 12:
Tie on your final body segment and whip finish.

Step 13:
Now trim and shape the crab body

(Use hackle pliers to hold the legs out of your way while you trim the body)

Step 14:
Use permanent markers to color your crab fly just the way you like!

Here's a shot from the underside of this crab fly...

Now, its time to go fishing and catch the big one!

Capt Matt guides in the Lower Keys during the Spring Tarpon Migration.  If you would like to set up a Tarpon Fishing Trip in the Florida Keys this next season, contact Capt Matt at

"How to tie a 
Blue Crab Fly"


Anonymous said...

do tarpon eat crab flies?

Unknown said...

tarpon love crabs and i'll bet they would eat crab flies. i have not gotten into the habit of fishing for tarpon with crab flies but it sure makes sense, good luck!

Anonymous said...

This is a great fly tying video and blog, thank you. I love fly fishing with crab flies!!!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
pharmacy said...

It is pretty impressive and I bet that you can catch a lot of carnivorous fishes with it.

Olaf said...

How do you bend the eye of the hook? I'm using #2 34007 hooks and they break when I try to bend them.

Unknown said...

I am so glad read your wonderful article. Im looking forward to read more of your works and posts. You did a good job! Try to visit my site too and enjoy.